Pierre Mortemousque’s daughter apparently really wanted to attend UGA; he really didn’t want to pay for it — at least full price.
That is what the University of Georgia police say they found after they got a tip the Virginia man was passing himself off as an in-state resident while his daughter was on Greek Row.
Now the Lynchburg, Va., resident is facing four felony charges of theft — totaling nearly $40,000 — for the two years his daughter got her education subsidized by Georgia taxpayers, said UGA Chief Jimmy Williamson.
Mortemousque has since paid his financial debt in the form of a check for full restitution, somewhere around $37,000, Williamson said.
“We found he had another child who was eligible for in-state tuition in Virginia so our question was, how could they be eligible for Georgia and Virginia,” Williamson told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Monday.
“We’ve had other universities ask how we found out about it. There has been a lot of interest.”
Williamson said it was the first criminal investigation in his 10 years as chief involving falsified residence papers. Attempts to reach Mortemousque, 46, his 20-year-old daughter, or his lawyer, Tom Camp, for comment were unsuccessful. Mortemousque turned himself in on June 27.
Mortemousque claimed an apartment that rented in Athens was his legal residence but that conflicted with what he reported on his tax forms that were supplied to the state, Williamson said. The Virginian provided conflicting tax forms to the university that falsely showed Athens as his legal residence, Williamson said.
The investigation showed minimal water usage at the apartment and the electronic access showed he had only used the apartment 90 out of 400 days, Williamson said.
The daughter has since left the university. Police aren’t pursing charges against her. Her social media postings show an enthusiastic Bulldog while in Athens.
“The father took full responsibility in providing the documents to the daughter,” Williamson said.“By the law, they both could have been charged but the daughter probably only did what the father told her to do.”
“It was a judgment call on our part.”
Whether paying the full tuition will help him with the district attorney or judge remains to be seen.
He faces up to 10 years on each theft count and if convicted, he faces five years for another charge of false swearing.