Richmond Heights School Superintendent, Dr. Robert Moore II, has resigned more than a month after he was indicted on charges of bribery, theft and extortion. Moore and Richard Muse, Maintenance Supervisor, were arrested in February after the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office alleged it caught the two school officials taking unauthorized “marked” funds from a daycare business that contracted with the school for $3,700.
Both officials were put on paid leave in early March by the Richmond Heights Board of Education. In the interim Bob Mengerink from Cuyahoga County’s Educational Service Center was appointed acting superintendent. According to Treasurer John Scott, during Moore’s leave of absence the district has paid him approximately $13,749 of his annual $110,000 salary.
The 52-year-old Mentor resident resigned on Monday in a letter addressed to School Board President Bobby Jordan. The former superintendent wrote:
“It is with regret and disappointment that I submit this letter of resignation. I have enjoyed working with you and the entire board during my tenure. Thank you for allowing me to serve the students and community of Richmond Heights.”
According to Jordan, the board has called a special meeting for Thursday evening where they will appoint former superintendent of Cleveland Heights-University Heights Schools, Doug Heuer, interim superintendent. Heuer will determine whether Muse will be terminated.
According to Moore’s resume, he received his Masters of Education in 1977 from Baldwin Wallace University and Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education in 1986 from Alcorn State. Moore was with the Cleveland Metropolitan School District for 20 years as an assistant superintendent, principal and teacher before joining the Richmond Heights School District.
According to news released previously from the Prosecutor’s Office, the two school officials allegedly shook down a business that contracted with the Richmond Heights school district. It was also reported that Moore and Muse threatened to end the business arrangement with the victim and school district if she did not make “cash” payments to them.
A recent release from the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office states the two men are facing additional charges. Currently Moore is facing a total of eight additional felony charges which include two counts of tampering with records. The additional criminal charges involve expense reimbursement forms Moore submitted to the school district for non-business related expenses on a trip to Columbus that he and Muse took in January.
Muse has been charged, according to the re-indictment, with three additional counts of forgery and tampering with records. According to the State of Ohio, Muse submitted fraudulent information in his job application to Moore, which included forged job training certificates.
Ishmell Owens, former student, said he is outraged by all of this. To take money from the kids when it is already a failing school system makes absolutely no sense. John Noah, former Cleveland Schools Administrator who worked with Moore previously, said he is shocked and in disbelief over these charges. Noah said, “Knowing what type of educator he was it is hard to imagine that Dr. Moore would do something like this.”
Moore and Muse have both plead not guilty to the charges. Jordan said he is saddened by the whole event but believes the resignation was the best thing for the school. He added if Moore had not resigned termination proceedings would have otherwise been very costly.
Robert Moore II, former Richmond Heights School Superintendent, has resigned more than a month after her was indicted on charges of bribery, theft and extortion. He became superintendent in 2012 after serving as interim for eight months. Moore came to Richmond Heights Schools in 2010 as principal of the elementary school prior to serving 20 years as a teacher, principal and assistant superintendent with the Cleveland Metropolitan School District.
By: Cherese Jackson (Virginia)