Former EMU student-employee charged in identity theft
One of the two former Eastern Michigan University student-employees who was accused of stealing the records of 64 people from the university turned himself in and has been charged, according to police.
Keonte Manning, 21, is charged with two counts of using a computer to commit a crime, three counts of identity theft and three counts of obtaining personal identifying information in order to commit identity theft, according to court records. EMU police Chief Bob Heighes said Manning was only recently charged after the investigation into the crimes, which were discovered in March, wrapped up.
“It’s quite the lengthy case in detail and the amount of follow up,” Heighes said. “Even though it happened six months ago, the investigation just recently finished.”
The university announced in March two former student-employees accessed the names, birthdays and Social Security numbers of other students. Records of 64 people, including six whose Social Security numbers were used to file fraudulent tax returns, were taken, according to the university.
The second former student-employee has had a warrant issued for his arrest, but he has not turned himself in or been apprehended, Heighes said. University police are continuing to look for him, he said.
Manning has been arraigned on the charges and was released from Washtenaw County Jail on a personal recognizance bond, Heighes said. He is scheduled to have a preliminary exam on Nov. 1, according to Heighes.
Heighes said he could not release more information on the details of the case because the investigation is ongoing.
Six students told university officials the Internal Revenue Service rejected their 2010 tax returns because their Social Security numbers were used on another filing. Heighes said he couldn’t comment on what information from the other 58 people was used.
The university took a number of steps after the breach was discovered to address security flaws, according to an official.
EMU spokesperson Geoff Larcom said the university went to an internal auditor for recommendations on how to prevent future security lapses. The university has instituted a clean-desk policy to make sure hard copies of records are stored and maintained, the admissions and financial aid departments have banned allowing student-employees access to critical storage areas without supervision and reconfigured some office spaces and moved items to allow student-employees to be supervised while performing tasks, he said.
Other measures taken include spot checking student workers to make sure they're only engaging in appropriate activities and instituting a student work area that is in full viiew of full-time financial aid advisers, he said.