You'll Stick With Your Crappy School, and You'll Like It


Crazy case in Ohio, where a 40-year-old single mother lied about the residency of her children in order to get the  kids into a better public school. Kelley Williams-Bolar claimed her kids lived with their grandfather rather than with her in Akron. Instead of merely transferring the kids back to the bad school, local officials instead decided to charge Williams-Bolar with two felonies, claiming that by enrolling her kids in the better school, she defrauded taxpayers of more than $30,000.

Williams-Bolar was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison earlier this month, although Judge Patricia Cosgrove suspended all but ten days of the sentence.

Cosgrove also appears to have grown frustrated with prosecutors' insistence on making an example of Williams-Bolar.

Cosgrove said the county prosecutor's office refused to consider reducing the charges to misdemeanors, and that all closed-door talks to resolve the case — outside of court — met with failure…

Cosgrove said numerous pretrial hearings were held since last summer.

"The state would not move, would not budge, and offer Ms. Williams-Bolar to plead to a misdemeanor," the judge said in an interview Wednesday.

"Of course, I can't put a gun to anybody's head and force the state to offer a plea bargain."…

Late Wednesday, Cosgrove issued a news release to area newspapers and television and radio stations, citing the need to respond to "overwhelming public interest" in her sentencing decision.

"The Summit County Prosecutor's Office retains complete control over whether to charge a person with a felony or a misdemeanor," the release stated.

Cosgrove's bailiff said the office had been bombarded by calls from angry area residents, most of whom were saying that Williams-Bolar's punishment far exceeded her crimes.

Williams-Bolar was also attending night school to obtain her teaching certificate. Her felony record could now bar her from teaching. Cosgrove has said she'd consider expunging the felonies if Williams-Bolar completes six months of probation.

NEXT: Paul Ryan, Supervillain?

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  1. Quatily ecudation for everyone! Except you.

  2. I think I’m going to refuse to have children until I have enough money tucked away somewhere to make sure they never have to experience a public school.

    1. If you homeschool or unschool them you don’t need much money.

    2. good we dont want ur yard apes anyway

      1. but you damn well better pay your property taxes, or we’ll seize your home

  3. Instead of merely transferring the kids back to the bad school, local officials instead decided to charge Williams-Bolar with two felonies, claiming that by enrolling her kids in the better school, she defrauded taxpayers of more than $30,000.

    “The better schools are for those that pay!”

    “But some are more ‘equal’ than others”
    Animal Farm, George Orwell.

  4. There’s nothing so satisfying to a scumbag prosecutor as throwing the book at a woman who tried to get a better education for her kids. Conan, what is good in life?

  5. That judge isn’t very tuffgai-on-crime.

    1. I like her already.

      WTF are the squirrels up to with the reply to buttons?

  6. Dig the comments on that linked site. It makes me want to punch someone. Or cry. (I’m in touch with all my feelings.)
    Also — very weird thing: I went to post this comment, and my name, e-mail and website under “Leave a Comment” autofilled as those of Old Mexican. True story. I hope there’s a technological reason for that. Otherwise, I’ve very worried. Doctor?

    1. Same thing happened to me. The “remember me” shit is fucked right now.

      1. Ah, I thought it was just me.

        1. We are all Kosh.

          1. We are Devo.

              1. I know kung fu.

            1. You like money too! We should hang out!

  7. You mean there’s not yet a mandatory minimum for enrolling in a different public school?

    Get cracking, Ohio legislature!

  8. Wow, I did pretty much the same thing to stay out of a crappy school for my final two years of high school.

    Who knew I was a felonious criminal? The whole point of the scheme was to stay out of the school with the real criminals.

  9. Liberals are pro choice on only one issue. And they’re wrong on that one.

    1. Hey, let’s turn everything into an abortion argument! Yay!

    2. Besides the obvious irony of your post…

      …i love how everything in life must be left up to a roll of the dice, otherwise you have no “choice”…

      Liberals would prefer to make all schools as good as the one she was trying to enroll her kid in…you realize that having only one good school is not “choice”? Say every single parent from 5 other schools wants to send their kid to the “good” school…guess what happens? They hold a lottery, and then tell the people they can’t fit to go back to their crappy schools…this is how vouchers actually works.

      But don’t let reality get in the way of a tired ideology…

      1. Yes, and clearly they’ve done such a great job making schools equal…equally mediocre. That is the core of a socialist philosophy. As long as everyone gets the same treatment, it’s perfectly all right for that treatment to be poor.

        1. I’m willing to go “full Finland”…are you?

          We’re stuck with crappy schools not because the left wants them that way…the answers are out there…tell me when you’re ready…


          1. I will do what all of your glorious leaders do and just send my kids to private school. problem solved.

            The world needs ditch diggers too, they can be your kids. The system works.

          2. I’m willing to go “full Sweden” on public schools, are you?

            I’m willing to go “full Finland”…are you

            You mean pay public school teachers less? It’s a start.

            Or when you said “full Finland,” did you only mean “partial Finland?”

            1. No, i mean pay teachers 1/3 the salary of surgeons…since that works there, let’s try it here…

              100k per teacher on average (300k for surgeons on average here)…i’m ready…you? 90% unionized…i’m willing we get some people to take up that profession instead of wasting their intelligence on crap like wall street market bubbles, etc…

              …kids go to school at 2, parents paid monthly if they have kids, hot meals in school, all eduacation is free – all the way to a PHD – safety net to prevent any poverty at all…the “full finland”….

              …glad we can finally agree on what works…

              …still waiting for your somalia experiment to pan out…

              1. Kids in Finland don’t go to school until 7. Before that they’re in community daycare. The Lutheran church is heavily involved in the state socialism. Still ok with ‘full Finland’?

      2. That’s actually how lotteries work. You left yourself a clue here, “They hold a lottery.” I’ll leave it to you to figure out what a voucher is.

        1. You’re replacing part of one lottery with a second, while not scrapping the first entirely….i’ll leave it to you to figure out what these two lotteries are…

          1. You’re saying private schools admit students based on a lottery? You can’t really that fucking stupid.

            1. There is a difference between being stupid and being purposely intellectually dishonest. SM knows that, but is more interested in arguing about soviet style lotteries to divvy up the perceived 0 sum game of education.

            2. No, i’m saying kids who get vouchers to go to other public schools or private schools, if they all took up the deal (which they won’t because some of them lost the first lottery – bad parents) it would crush the best public/private schools…and they’d reject all the extra students…and then they’d need more teachers…wonder who those people would be…

              …you people just rearrange chairs on the titanic and assume a better result…it just doesn’t work that way…look at what really works…finland…etc…

              …in the end, vouchers change nothing. I’m from milwaukee, they’ve tried for 20 years now…its a failure. Get over it.

      3. Ummm, that is not how vouchers work. Vouchers are cash subsidies to parents who can then choose to put their kids in private OR public school. Of course, we all know what the parents’ choice will be… hence the liberals/democrat/union complex’s opposition to any voucher concept.

        1. We actually know what happens because its been tried…it does not have the results that places like finland do…i know why you push your failed ideology…i just wish you people would be forthcoming about its failure.

          If you really had your way, you’d get rid of all schools…vouchers are just a step…you don’t care what happens to people who are born poor…you all know there is not enough educational capacity in this country for quality education…a few more kids go to a private school…the whole district is not better off. Kids with disabilities are left in the regular schools…we get it. We know what happens.

          You people think all economics are the same – macro and micro, no difference to you. You look at education the same way. Just because people have a choice to change their chairs around, does not mean the ship doesn’t sink.

          Learn about the difference between an “open system” and a “closed system” – then apply that to your educational plans.

          I realize my mother was smart enough to make a choice to move to an area with better schools – but i also realize this was available for tons of parents who didn’t take that choice. Look at what really happens with vouchers – in milwaukee. Overall, nothing. It does not solve a damn problem.

          But then again…much like the war on drugs…we all know that’s not really the goal…you people are no different from those you despise…

      4. Say every single parent from 5 other schools wants to send their kid to the “good” school…guess what happens? They hold a lottery, and then tell the people they can’t fit to go back to their crappy schools…this is how vouchers actually works.

        As opposed to your preferred philosophy of just telling all of the single mothers and the poor to stay in their crappy schools.

        Can’t have anyone getting above their station, that’s your philosophy.

        1. On the whole, nothing changes…this is empirical evidence i’m talking about…

          …i want to fix all schools and provide education to all so all can get above their station…that’s my philosophy…i’m ready for you to join the fight…just tell me when…


        1. You people worship competition, right?

          Why would the best and the brightest choose a mediocre paying career like teaching when they could make a ton more as an engineer, etc?

          Keep paying mediocre wages (RELATIVE to other jobs in the US), keep getting mediocre teachers.

          In finland, its a good job, relative to other salaries…they fight for them…here, we beg for them…

          Don’t worry, maybe we could get some undocumented workers to do it for $6 an hour and really save some money…but remember, as long as there’s vouchers and you can choose which undocumented worker teachers your kid, you’ll be AOK…

          …again, you get what you pay for…relatively speaking…poor teachers and impoverished kids…gee, why isn’t this working better?

          1. Well said. Unfortunately, you’re debating Ayn Rand-worshipping sociopaths.

  10. It’s a good thing there isn’t anything else going on in Summit County, Ohio that deserves the tenacious attention of Sherri Bevan Walsh.

  11. Let’s play name that party

    The answer is here:…..ventid=795

    1. Host: Committee to Re-Elect Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh Summit County Prosecutor
      Info: Summit County Prosecutor
      Sherri Bevan Walsh
      2010 Annual Golf Scramble

      Lunch: Noon
      Shotgun: 1:30p
      Dinner: 5:30p

      If that’s not an incitement to violence, nothing is.

      1. If that’s not an incitement to violence, nothing is.

        Ha Ha

        I missed that.

  12. [L]ocal officials instead decided to charge Williams-Bolar with two felonies, claiming that by enrolling her kids in the better school, she defrauded taxpayers of more than $30,000.

    But, somehow, delivering crappy education services for the same amount is NOT considered fraud by these zealous crime fighters! Hmmm!

    1. You are right Old Mexican, she should sue the school district for failing to deliver the educational services the purport to deliver.

      1. but it will be her word against ours, and she’s a convicted felon

        1. But you already admitted the difference, otherwise there would be no reason to object to her children attending the ‘better’ school.

  13. I took a shit in Ohio.

    1. Just the once?

    2. I hope you left it there.

      1. we grew corn w it which we sold back to him.

    3. Cleveland smells like shit.

  14. At the risk of drawing distain, I think what she did was wrong. She DID defraud them.

    I find it funny that the same people here who delight in denying Rahm Emanuel the right to be on the Chicago ballot due to his failure to meet strict “residency” requirements are outraged that this woman was convicted of actually lying about her residency in order to receive the services of the municipality she defrauded.

    1. I won’t argue that, but if she defrauded the municipality where her children went to school, why isn’t she getting a refund from the district where they didn’t? She saved those folks money.

      1. She did not defraud. She utilized the services offered to her relative as a designee. I don’t understand how that argument could be denied.

        1. Exactly – her relative had to contribute to the school via taxes, regardless of whether he had children or not. Where is the damage?

    2. No, she did not, if their grandfather assented to her using his address. Since he is paying taxes to that municipality, his grandchildren should be allowed to attend schools that he is districted to. The physical location of the children should NOT FUCKING MATTER!! If I pay taxes to a municipality and my neices and nephews want to use my district’s services, I would fucking do the same thing she did and glare down the prosecutor that dared try my sister for fraud. In fact, I’d claim to be defrauded by the state at that point because in essence they’re saying that my taxes give me nothing unless I claim dependents.

      Fuck Ohio prosecutors!

      1. “The physical location of the children should NOT FUCKING MATTER!!”

        It does in the eyes of the law. And as the judge so rightly ruled it is fraud.

        “I would fucking do the same thing she did and glare down the prosecutor that dared try my sister for fraud.”

        Gee! What big balls you have, Grandma!

        1. I don’t think the judge ruled it was fraud. In fact, her communications appear to indicate that she thinks the jury reached an incorrect verdict, but lacks a legal mechanism to vacate the decision.

        2. A jury convicted her dipshit. The judge was trying to reduce the rdiculous charge.

          1. Fucking judge nullification. How does that work?

            1. The way it works is that the jury does its ACTUAL JOB and judges the law itself as well as the evidence against the accused.

              1. This case doesn’t even require jury nullification…it’s very dubious to place this act under the criminal fraud statute in the first place.

            2. If you would like more info you can find it here:


            3. Not like it should. The judge should have turned to the jury and said “Please come back with your best judgement of what is right in this case” and told the prosecutor if they uttered one peep that they’d be hauled off to jail for contempt of court.

            4. Sorry Gus, the first couple of times I read your post I thought it said “Jury Nullification”. My above posts will hopefully make more sense in that context.

              1. I figured that.

    3. Not to put too fine a point on it, but is Rahm Emanuel being indicted for a felony or are they going to wait for the Illinois Supreme Court ruling first?

      1. The commonality was issues of residency.

        1. And the problem here is the felony charge. We would not have heard about this if she was found guilty of civil or misdemeanor failure to report a correct address on a school registration form.

    4. Seeing as how you have drawn the disdain you knew you would, I will just say that I totally fucking agree with Lost_In_Translation.

    5. “Distain” is what I feel upon witnessing your spelling problem. “Pidy” is what i feel when exposed to your bootlicking ignorance.

  15. Wow, stupid law, MN has open enrollment, you can go to any public school you want as long as you are able to get yourself there.

    1. You’re right, but my experience has been that the open enrollment is used more for athletics than for academics.

  16. She DID defraud them.

    And the staff of her shitty local school has defrauded every student enrolled there. Has the prosecutor filed charges, yet?

  17. 1) the school was NOT open enrollment.
    2) the mom refused a $1700 tuition bill which wouldve ended the prob.
    3) the GF was NOT the legal guardian & the kids didnt live there.

    1. If the squirrels would let me post, I’d point out that (1) is irrelevant, (2) is irrelevent because its essentially trying to extort from the grandfather and (3) is both irrelevent on the first point and the stupidest fucking thing I’ve ever heard on the second.

      Shit like this is why school choice needs to happen. If you’re going to steal my money for a service, you should atleast give me the courtesy of letting me choose the shitty service I get.

      1. The problem is that an (ever-shrinking) portion of school funding comes from property taxes. In other words, schools and localities are inextricably connected, although the degree to which this is the case depends on the state and locality (for example, some places organize schools by township, others by county). The first point is not irrelevant, precisely because of the third. The state does not recognize the grandfather as legal guardian, and so his residence cannot be considered the legal residence of the children. Therefore, the mother was enrolling the children in a school outside of her locality and thus for which she was not paying the property taxes. The tuition bill (second point) was there to compensate for this “loss” in the eyes of the state. The verdict was technically correct and it was rendered by a jury of her peers. That the crime itself is unjust is an entirely different matter. The case was sound, the law was bad.

        1. Its irrelevant because its basically revealing the law to be outright defrauding of the grandfather, who lawfully paid taxes for the district and was disallowed from utilizing his portion of the taxes. If the state had provided complete records of all of the taxes provided by the grandfather and subtracted out the portion used for education previously and netted the current portion to the cost of educating the daughter’s children, there might be a case there, in which case, the penalty should be the same as missing a tax payment, namely to work out with the state the debited amount. If the state did not use standard accounting rules and instead declared the grandfather had paid no taxes previously (given the state of state education accounting, this sounds about right) then they’re essentially defrauding the grandfather in contract terms. Now, I’m not an idiot. The state basically excuses itself from all contract language on its part while applying it to the nth degree to the citizens part. However, I don’t believe the state can actually do that legally, so if I were on the jury, my argument would be that the state cannot actually prove that the woman defrauded the state because no accounts were made and the argument that the children did not live at the grandfather’s address atleast temporarily because the state did not send over daily checks. Therefore, the state’s case is misapplied and the woman did nothing wrong.

          It wouldn’t change to stupid fucking state of affairs, but it would see that justice was meted out.

          1. libertarians are gouged on the horns of a di-enema here to wit: u like (property tax) vouchers transferred to for-profit charters WITHOUT local voter approval to move public money outta district. >pure govt abuse of property rights

            1. You’d do better to write in haiku. Then when you make no sense, we’d simply accpet it as part of the performance art.

              1. whatev i obvs no more about being libertarian than u ever will

                1. and yet, you can’t string together a coherent sentence. Perhaps if you didn’t communicate like a fourteen year old girl high on pixie stix we would take you a bit more seriously. Until then, go the fuck away.

            2. Re: OhioOrrin,

              libertarians are gouged on the horns of a di-enema[sic] here to wit: [yo]u like (property tax) vouchers transferred to for-profit charters WITHOUT local voter approval to move public money outta district.

              – What do you mean “you people”?

              – What do you mean, “what do you mean ‘you people’ “???

              Gotta love that movie!

        2. Everyone understands all that. It’s still fucking stupid.

        3. So the $30,000 is figured from what the tuition would’ve been for them, not the difference between the costs at the local school & grampa’s?

  18. The squirrels are really having a field day today. I give up!

    (BTW, don’t any of those squirrels ever use Y Slow or even look for 2 seconds at the page weight of this god-forsaken blog?)

  19. This is another case where Jury Nullification could have been helpfull. If I were on her jury I would have voted “Not Guilty” regardless of the evidence “against” her. One of the purposes of a jury is to judge the law itself.

    1. Amen brother. And somehow the prosecutor would find himself surrounded by angry harranging mothers by the end. I’d arrange it.

      1. She actually deserves an award. She cares more about her kid than most parents apparently do.

        1. Indeed, but like the old saying goes “the tallest blade of grass is the first to be cut by the lawnmower”

          don’t try to help yourself or your children as it will upset the bureaucracy.

    2. Jury nullification is a double edged sword that creates as many problems as it solves. It’s also not necessary in this case, as placing this act under the criminal fraud statute is extremely questionable. It’s not a case of the statute being unjust, it’s the statute being unrelated to the act in question.

      1. So what your saying is, if jurors had the right legal brains, they should have worked out there is no law to nullify…

  20. I like this judge.

    So, since, as the prosecutor claimed, it costs the school district $X to educate a kid, doesn’t that mean that every parent who homeschools or sends their kid to private school is saving the school district $X? Shouldn’t they get a check for that amount?

    her communications appear to indicate that she thinks the jury reached an incorrect verdict, but lacks a legal mechanism to vacate the decision.

    A judge can dismiss a criminal case at any time, for any reason. The prosecution, of course, is free to appeal the dismissal.

    1. Can judges dismiss a case in the midst of a jury trial however. The prosecutor could have spun the prosecution in a different light to get the case to trial and then changed the slant during the trial. In which case, can the judge simply halt proceedings before a verdict is rendered and simply say “everyone go home, Mr. prosecutor is just being a dick”?

      1. Sure, a judge can dismiss a criminal case in the middle of a jury trial. Defendant files whatever Ohio’s version of a JNOV/JML motion is at close of State’s case and at close of their own. State can appeal, of course.

        Alternately, doesn’t the judge participate in putting together the charge given to the jury? Like L_i_T above, I’m having a hard time seeing fraud here. Lying on the application, sure, but fraud?

        And a potential sentence for this of 15 years is absolutely insane.

      2. Isn’t that basically what happened in the Stagliano case? Although it was more “the star witness is a maroon (who accused me under oath of coaching him)” more than “the prosecutor is a dick”.

  21. There are a lot of fuckers here missing the point of the article. The point was that the prosecutor refused, for months and months, to plea bargain. The prosecutor was on a rampage and dead set to make an example of this woman and take her away from her kid for 15 YEARS. Just for trying to give her kid more opportunities in life. Yeah, she violated the letter of the law, but the prosecutor violated the spirit of it. There has to be reason in applying the law, not just blind obedience.

    Think of two 15-year-olds emailing pictures of their genitals to each other…the letter of the law says they should be prosecuted, jailed and be on the sex offender registry for the rest of their lives. Logic, reason and compassion say that they should be punished by their parents, not the State, and that their futures shouldn’t be jeopardized because they let their considerable hormones get the best of them.

    You should ask yourself what the cost of this failure to apply reason to the law was vs. the cost of this woman sending her kid to a school not in her district.

    1. Dude, we know the point of the article, but there shouldn’t have even needed to be a plea bargain if contract law meant anything to the state.

      1. the mom refused to pay the $1700 tuition bill so no plea deal.

      2. the mom refused to pay the $1700 tuition bill so no plea deal.

        1. You can’t say that again. You can’t say that again.

        2. She could have probably payed it if less taxes were ass-raped out of her overall.

      3. Contract law? What does that have to do with anything?

        If you’re trying to say that paying taxes makes you a party to a contract with the state, you’re off in lala land. That’s not how it works.

        1. you’re right, although I have to pay the state for services (see firefighters letting home burn) the state has no obligation to provide services that I require (see K-12 education) therefore there really is no contract, just a compelling interest for me not to get my metaphorical legs broken by the non-metaphorical mob boss known as the state. Silly me…I rescind my comment about contracts.

  22. “Think of two 15-year-olds emailing pictures of their genitals to each other”

    I do. Every day. It’s all I ever think about.

    1. Who didn’t see that reply coming!?!?

  23. So constituents are pissed at the prosecutor, and the judge has reduced the sentence and offered to expunge the defendant’s record.

    It seems to me that the system’s self-corrective mechanisms are working relatively well here, for once.

    1. Ben,

      A. Prosecutor’s not fired
      B. Woman’s record isn’t expunged yet
      C. Precedent is set, regardless of eventual outcome.

  24. This is clearly bullshit. However, I think everybody who uses public schools is de facto stealing from me, so the main problem here is the selectivity of the prosecution.

    1. Our town recently proposed to charge households for use of the local recycling facility based on assessed value of the home. It was withdrawn because use of the facility has nothing to do with value of one’s home. I asked on of the local insiders why the same logic didn’t apply to taxes for the schools, and wasn’t I being penalized since I dont’ use the schools at all (no kids). She was gob-stopped. Her answer, such as it was, it that we must all pay for the public schools.

      I’ve taken to calling them government schools. Maybe it will change a few minds.

    2. But if somebody didn’t use the public schools, you think they wouldn’t still be operating? So how can everybody who uses public schools be said to be stealing from you?

    3. If you’ve ever received correct change from a teenage cashier, you’ve benefited from public schools. In fact, the more money you make, the more you benefit from the basic education offered by public schools that made it possible for your waiters, cashiers, gas-station attendants, and other menial laborers to serve you better.

  25. Its sad to see how unmerciless the government can be at times. It only shows that government is the root of all evil in society. No human being would do this to another human being. Most reasonable people would have just let her go or allowed her to paid the extra cost that it costed the city. I think that would have been fair.

    1. and that’s assuming that reasonable people would force her to pay to support a system she doesn’t want in the first place.

  26. Every single school issue is solves by simply getting government out of schooling altogether.

    If feel you must, provide ‘education stamps’ to the very poor just like ‘food stamps’. But absolutely under no circumstances should there be any kind of government school, public teacher’s union, “districts” and the like.

    This is all self-evident of course, hence all the opposition to even incremental movement away from what we have now.

  27. “she defrauded taxpayers of more than $30,000.”

    Gee Whiz I thought public school was freeeeee. So I don’t understand how using one free service you are not entitled while not using another free service gets you to $30,000. I vaguely remember something about separate but equal? They also get $ from Washington for each kiddo. And they were collecting property tax from the grand fathers property. And a different jurisdiction got property tax from the mother. I personally would like to know where the $30k came from and what her attorney’s response was.

    A few google searches makes things murky in my mind including a foreclosure. It would be funny if the root cause of all this was the fed.

    1. Public school is not free. Depending on where you live you pay taxes for the public school in that area through property taxes. People with higher property taxes have nicer schools and people with lower property taxes have shittier schools. It sucks but that is the way it works.

  28. There is something seriously wrong with our education system

  29. Wasn’t government mandated busing supposed to have made all school districts equal?

  30. Nobody seems to be asking the question as to how all this got started.

    Maybe there was a tiny bit of extra money spent in the educational process, but state and federal funding would be essentially the same for each school in which these kids might attend, right? Where is the cause to have over a hundred families (correct me if I heard that wrong) investigated using taxpayer money? And who wins? Is this just a boondoggle with a handy excuse, desire for racial segregation, or something else? An attack on school choice? Or is my intuition wrong and the money spent will be recovered in decreased “fraud”?

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