Financial aid scam investigation continues

Rick Gomez

Cerritos College campus police is investigating a financial aid scam involving 30 to 40 people and $200, 000, according to director of Public Affairs Mark Wallace.

Two students, Ronald Dennis Clark, 37, of Long Beach and Shanay Bobbie Beacham, 27, of Hawthorne, were arrested for identity theft and financial aid fraud at Cerritos College so far.

Both were charged with criminal conspiracy, burglary, forgery and grand theft. Clark obtained $4,556 and Beacham received $13,000 from the scam.

Bill Farmer, president of Cerritos College, said he is deeply disappointed at the situation.

Although there are 30 to 40 names involved, Farmer remains optimistic. “We have to assume that people are innocent before proven guilty.”

Wallace said campus police has been investigating the case for two months now.

There were a series of events that led to the big investigation.

“It began when a member of the public arrived at campus police claiming identity theft.

“(The member) was trying to buy a house and noticed there was a school loan on her credit report,” Wallace said.

One month after the complaint and a month into the investigation, campus police was able to find Clark and Beacham.

Campus police was not available for comment due to the ongoing investigation.