FBI investigating payroll fraud allegations made against BSL pol - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

FBI investigating payroll fraud allegations made against BSL police chief

Sheriff Ricky Adam said DeNardo was relieved of his duty and city issued equipment just before he shot himself Thursday. (Photo source: WLOX) Sheriff Ricky Adam said DeNardo was relieved of his duty and city issued equipment just before he shot himself Thursday. (Photo source: WLOX)
BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) -

The FBI is now involved in the Mike DeNardo investigation. WLOX News Now just confirmed the Hancock County Sheriff’s Department turned over that part of this multi-faceted case to federal agents. 

They reportedly have questions about the payroll fraud allegations made against DeNardo in the hours after he died.  What we haven’t been told is why the FBI has its agents looking into the case. 

While federal agents focus on the payroll fraud allegations, Sheriff Ricky Adam has county and state investigators looking at other questions haunting Bay St. Louis. 

“We’re looking at things going on in the city,” Adam said, unwilling to share details about those allegations just yet.

Hancock County Coroner Jim Faulk said a preliminary autopsy indicates DeNardo died from a perforating gunshot to the torso. The coroner speculated the wound came from a 12-gauge shotgun. 

Adam did confirm DeNardo used a 12-gauge to kill himself.  What he doesn’t know is whether the gun was a city issued weapon. 

“That hasn’t been determined yet,” Adam said. “It wasn’t on the list of city issued equipment.”

Fillingame knows both the feds and the state have investigators looking into issues pertaining to Denardo and the city. 

“That’s why I don’t want to speculate at this point on anything,” Fillingame said. “I am deferring to the investigators on the completion of the whole investigation.”

Adam said he found an apology note from DeNardo in his office Friday. In the letter, DeNardo apologized to the sheriff for lying about payroll fraud.

Like others in the city, Mayor Les Fillingame has heard talk about a second letter from the chief being located after his death. This letter was reportedly written to the mayor. 

“I heard the same way you did,” Fillingame said, noting he hasn’t seen the letter, and no one in an official capacity has told him about it. 

“Yeah, I would think it does exist, if that’s what investigators say, but it hasn’t been presented to me,” Fillingame said.

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