A former West Virginia Division of highways supervisor has admitted to lying to a federal agent.
Matthew Tuttle, 38, of Buckhannon, pleaded guilty Wednesday morning to making a false statement to a federal agent in connection to an ongoing investigation at the Equipment Division of the West Virginia Division of Highways, according to a news release from U.S. Attorney William Ihlenfeld's office.
Tuttle formerly served as the Highway Administrator for the WVDOH in Upshur County and as a supervisor for the Equipment Division. U.S. Magistrate Judge James Seibert accepted the plea Wednesday in Wheeling.
Testimony at the plea hearing revealed that complaints made by citizens were beneficial to investigators and led them to obtain a federal search warrant for the DOH Equipment Division. Tuttle faces up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.
Barry Thompson, also a supervisor as the DOH Equipment Division, was indicted in February 2014 for making false statements to a federal agent. Thompson lied to investigators about his knowledge of state employees repairing and replacing parts for a dump truck on state time and at state expense, after a person purchased the truck at a DOH equipment auction, according to the indictment. Thompson also told investigators that he didn't work on state time after an auction to obtain replacement parts for that equipment, although he actually did so, according to investigators. Thompson also ordered an employee to work on the truck on state time, at the states expense, according to the indictment. If convicted, Thompson faces a fine of up to $250,000.