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Ex-Columbus-Lowndes Airport manager arrested for embezzlement


Billy Scarborough

Billy Scarborough



Isabelle Altman and Slim Smith


The contents of this article have been modified since its original posting.


A former manager of the Columbus-Lowndes Airport has been arrested by the Mississippi Office of the State Auditor for embezzlement. 


Billy Scarborough, 53, of Ethelsville, was arrested Monday in connection with a 2014 investigation, according to an OSA spokesperson. He was also served a demand of $14,490.81, which includes interest and investigative costs. 


Scarborough allegedly obtained more than 2,000 gallons of fuel from Columbus Public Works when he worked as airport manager under an independent contract. He also faces a charge from the Lowndes County Sheriff's Office for embezzlement after he was accused of stealing airplane parts. 


The OSA spokesperson said Scarborough obtained the fuel with a fuel card the city and county provided. The investigation was specifically into Scarborough and not the Columbus Public Works Department, the spokesperson confirmed. 


The Columbus-Lowndes Airport is a joint city-county venture run primarily by the city. A board with appointees from both the city and county oversee the airport. 


"I didn't know about the arrest, but we knew about the situation pretty much as soon as it happened," said Ward 3 Councilman Charlie Box, who serves on the airport board. "He wasn't an employee, so it wasn't a termination. We just ended his contact." 


Lowndes County Board of Supervisors President Harry Sanders and County Administrator Ralph Billingsley both said they were unaware of Scarborough's arrest before The Dispatch contacted them Thursday morning. 


Scarborough has been released from OSA custody on $7,500 bond.




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