Wendell, N.C. — American Cancer Society officials were meeting Wednesday with investigators to discuss their claims that two Relay for Life volunteers embezzled money from the organization.
David Mangum and Dianna Scoggins, who have not been charged, are the co-chairpersons of the East Wake Relay for Life, which includes Knightdale, Wendell and Zebulon.
The organization's regional executive coordinator filed a complaint with the Wendell Police Department accusing Mangum and Scoggins, of 419 Fowlkes St. in Wendell, of fraudulent activity.
“It is certainly disheartening for us,” said Chris Green, of the American Cancer Society.
According to a search warrant, the American Cancer Society uncovered an "elaborate embezzlement scheme," involving Mangum and Scoggins, that had been operating for a "long period of time."
“We know the possibilities are out there. We protect against them, set up systems and insurance against it, but when you do hear it, it’s disappointing,” Green said.
The Relay for Life is one of the key annual fundraisers for the American Cancer Society. This year the East Wake Relay raised more than $99,000 to help fund cancer research, care and support programs.
Green told police that money was collected by the co-chairs at meetings held at Wendell Baptist Church at 3615 Wendell Blvd. The church, which merely served as a venue, is not connected to the case. The money was supposed to be deposited for the American Cancer Society.
"Some deposits were made late, and some may not have been made at all,” said Sam Foster, a spokesman for the Wendell Police Department.
Investigators searched the Fowlkes Street home looking for evidence on Friday. Police seized a computer, flash drives, bank statements and an American Cancer Society donation box.
“Our donations are $5 and $10 at a time. Communities (are) coming together adding up to millions of dollars raised so they are all important to us especially in these economic times,” Green said.
Green said the two co-chairs served a variety of roles over several years with the group.