SHOCKING SECRETS! Steven Ingersoll unloads on Kaye Mentley in an email to former Lake Superior State University Charter Office head Bruce Harger! (Read Part 1 and Part 2 of the series.)
My recent Freedom of Information Act request to Lake Superior State University (LSSU) revealed a shocking series of emails between Steven Ingersoll and Bruce Harger stretching from October 2015 through the end of April 2016.
Harger's interest in the Ingersoll case is perplexing, considering he's the former head of LSSU’s Charter School office.
So, what are we to think about this closer-than-this relationship?
Buddies...or money honeys?
Miss Fortune reveals more from a remarkable selection of Mr. Persecution Complex Ingersoll's personal sentencing hearing summaries — staggering information the Traverse City Record-Eagle allegedly acquired but never published.
Ingersoll’s skewed ramblings includes one email where he lacerates his longtime Grand Traverse Academy colleague and consulting partner, Kaye Mentley.
The entire story, emails, Ingersoll's complete January 7, 2016 personal testimony observations compared with the official transcript, exclusively from Miss Fortune. (If you don't like it, sue me!)
SHE CAST ME AS AN EDUCATIONAL CHARLATAN AND A FINANCIAL CROOK
So how do you counter the incoherent rantings of a self-absorbed sociopath?
With the official court transcript of Kaye Mentley's January 7, 2016 sentencing hearing testimony, that's how! (Ingersoll's summary incorrectly shows 2015, not 2016.)
Ingersoll's professional working relationship with Mentley at the Grand Traverse Academy goes back many years, with the bulk of their professional interactions revealed exclusively on this blog: Kaye Mentley's October 19, 2015 affidavit, with the revelation that Ingersoll regularly referred to the Grand Traverse Academy his "golden goose"; and a March 2016 four-part series featuring highlights from Mentley's official sentencing hearing testimony available at Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4.
But let's start with another of those formerly secret Harger/Ingersoll emails.
(Don't these people know using an email from a public institution like Lake Superior State University makes those messages subject to a Freedom of Information Act request?)
In this email, dated December 9, 2015, Ingersoll shares with Harger his take on Kaye Mentley's testimony, asserting she cast him "as an educational charlatan and financial crook".
While that may have been Ingersoll's impression, the official sentencing hearing transcript shows Mentley never used either term.
In addition, Ingersoll's contention that Jan Geht's cross-examination "forced" Mentley to admit that her "denial of previous knowledge of the SSM rebates and accounting methodology when M&M first questioned her" were "all false" is far from the truth. ("M&M" appears to be a reference to Mike Pemberton and Mike Kaza, mentioned in the transcript.)
In fact, it's so far from the truth it's nearly a lie.
First, the words "rebate" or "rebates" never appear in the official transcript of Mentley's January 7, 2016 testimony — not once.
Secondly, Mentley's critical awareness and acknowledgment of Ingersoll's debt stemmed from a May 20, 2013 meeting with the Thrun Law Firm and the firm's subsequent 15-page recommendation.
Let's take a look at a snippet from the transcript, where Ingersoll's attorney Jan Geht bores in on Mentley:
Looks like Kaye wasn't buying the fiction that Ingersoll had long managed to feed to the Grand Traverse Academy board.
Here's another short segment where Mentley continues:
Mentley was questioned later by Assistant United States Attorney, Janet Parker, who begins to establish key dates in the timeline:
Parker asks Mentley about the accounting treatment of the missing millions, before and after the IRS investigation had begun:
And while Geht questioned Mentley after Parker, he did not get her to admit her earlier testimony was "false".
Geht asked Mentley if she sought the advice of an attorney after learning of a "three and a half million dollar thing on the books". Mentley admitted contacted a lawyer on behalf of the board (the Thrun Law firm), and stated she began to interact more closely with board president Mark Noss and attorney Doug Bishop.
Keep in mind that Mentley didn't manage the school and control its finances.
That job belonged to Steven Ingersoll.
And those other wild accusations about Judge Ludington?
While Judge Ludington did question Mentley, the exchange that Ingersoll 'paraphrased' in his summary never happened.
Let's compare Ingersoll's fevered imagination with the official testimony.
First, Ingersoll's assertions:
When the Judge questioned her directly she admitted that from its inception the Academy needed SSM assistance at the end of the every fiscal year in order to “stay in the black.”
The Judge asked “You and the board were then aware that the Academy was losing money every year?”
Mentley answered yes.
He continued, “How did the board deliberate to decide whether to use the “rebate vehicle” or close the school?”
Kaye responded, “They didn’t, Steve just presented the plan and they accepted it.”
Judge: “So the rebate vehicle was discussed at the board meeting every year?” Yes.
Now here's the actual exchange, as shown in the transcript:
THE COURT: Okay. So you would reach a point in the year where you knew that the budget, which was revenue neutral, couldn't be met; you were losing money, correct?
THE WITNESS: Correct.
THE COURT: So what was the board's discussion, if you can specifically recall, about how you were going to survivor or whether you needed to close your doors? That's a very significant question. Can you recall what the board's discussion was as you looked at, as you said, red ink?
THE WITNESS: There was never a discussion of closing the doors. There was always the assumption that as we stabilized in enrollment, and state aid would increase, that we would be able to operate in the black.
THE COURT: Well, specifically you would get to the end of a year and knew that you were going to have to call on this vehicle for balancing the budget. What was the discussion among the board members when you were facing a deficit about the alternatives and how you arrived at this vehicle?
THE WITNESS: I don't think there was discussion among the board members. I think it was included in Steve's report and recommendation that he would do this in order to keep Grand Traverse Academy in the black. And it's my recollection that that was not necessary every single year.
THE COURT: Okay. And he would do what specifically?
THE WITNESS: He would agree to give back a portion of the Smart Schools Management fee.
THE COURT: Okay. I have no additional questions.
Who are you going to believe, me or your lying eyes?