Local, state prosecutors say there’s not enough evidence to support criminal charges in Mason City schools special investigation

MASON CITY — Local and state prosecutors say no criminal charges will be filed over the case of improper disbursements to current and former staff of the Mason City Community School District.

A special investigative report by the State Auditor’s Office showed over $2.2 million was not properly disbursed to 66 school district employees during an eight-year period between July 2009 and August 2017. Then-State Auditor Mary Mosiman said at the time of the report’s release last December that former superintendent Anita Micich approved the improper disbursements without school board approval.

Cerro Gordo County Attorney Carlyle Dalen in a written statement released on Wednesday says his office with the assistance of the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation conducted a criminal review with the goal of assessing whether criminal charges would be appropriate in the case. Dalen says due to the sensitive nature of the case, his office also requested a second review by the Iowa Attorney General’s Office. The Attorney General’s Area Prosecution Division independently reviewed the case and determined that there was insufficient evidence to support any criminal charges concerning the matter.

Dalen says the decision not to prosecute is purely a review for criminal violations and has no impact on civil remedies that may be available to the school district.