GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) - A private school in Greenville filed tax documents that appear to show one third of the board of directors is dead. The IRS non-profit form 990, filed in 2011 and 2012, also shows payments to dead directors and to former employees falsely listed as still working for the school.
Fuller Normal Industrial Institute occupies a massive and mostly abandoned campus on Anderson Street in Greenville. The former charter school is closed and the only signs of life on campus are from a kindergarten hidden behind a padlocked, barbed wire tipped, chain link fence.
According to the tax documents, Fuller Normal has 12 directors. The "Trustee board votes on all operations of the school" and "the committee has a secretary and trustee who record all meetings and financial expenditures of the school," according to the forms submitted both years.
Of the 12 board members listed, at least 4 are dead. Some have been dead for close to a decade.
The tax records filed by the school claim NJ Roach Sr., GL Danner and DL Heard are board members. Virginia Lewis is listed as both a board member and as the board secretary.
7 On Your Side found Lewis' grave in Boiling Springs. She died on Christmas Eve in 2008.
Danner was buried in Gaston Memorial Park in Gastonia, North Carolina. He died in April of 2010.
Mother DL Heard was buried in Hartsville, South Carolina on March 19th 2005.
Bishop NJ Roach Senior died in the spring of 2011.
The school claims most of its income from "Fundraising events". The 2012 return shows $641 thousand dollars in fundraising. The South Carolina Department of Social Services also told 7 On Your Side the school got more than $140,000 in grants.
Each of the tax forms is signed by the school's President Patrick Frazier. Frazier is Presiding Bishop of the Fire Baptized Holiness church which also runs the Fuller Normal Industrial Institute.
7 On Your Side made multiple attempts to speak with Bishop Frazier at church and then at his home in Charlotte. When reached at home, Frazier said he had "no comment" about the tax forms.
Asked about these tax forms, South Carolina Secretary of State Mark Hammond said of the dead board members, "that's a big red flag. We appreciate you sharing that information with us."
Hammond said his office opened an investigation into the school and referred it to both the Attorney General and the IRS.
"We have forwarded the information and we're also going to ask some questions ourselves," Hammond said.
by Gordon Dill, WSPA Anchor/Reporter
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