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The Return Of Silas Potter

Phyllis Fletcher

A former manager for Seattle Public Schools is scheduled to come back from Florida to face felony charges. A judge in Tampa signed an order this morning that lets King County sheriffs pick him up. KUOW's Phyllis Fletcher reports.


Silas Potter is charged with stealing a quarter–million dollars from Seattle Public Schools.

He left Seattle last year, after the state auditor started looking into the contracting program Potter ran at the school district. Auditors found $1.8 million in contracts and expenses they called "questionable."

Last month, the King County Prosecutor charged Potter with felony theft and scheduled his arraignment for last week.

Potter didn't show. A judge issued a warrant.

Hours later, in Tampa, Florida, Potter was driving and made a sudden turn. A deputy said in a report that it appeared Potter was trying to avoid him. That led to Potter's arrest.

The latest hearing was to waive extradition proceedings. Someone familiar with the case said Potter looked petrified as he appeared in court by video. A spokesperson for the King County Prosecutor says if Potter had come to court last week in Seattle, he would still be free.

Now Potter has to come back to Seattle under guard and stay in jail at least until his first appearance in King County Superior Court.

Law enforcement spokespeople in Tampa and Seattle say they'll keep details of Potter's return secret until he's back. A detective said it could take weeks or days.

I'm Phyllis Fletcher, KUOW News.

© Copyright 2011, KUOW