More Findings Issued Against Former Drug Task Force Director

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Columbus – The former director of the Columbiana County Drug Task Force who pleaded guilty to theft in office in 2014 owes another $4,603, according to an audit released today by Auditor of State Dave Yost. 

On June 6, 2012, the Columbiana County Auditor’s Office issued $4,603 to the task force’s Confidential Informant Fund, but the funds were unaccounted for in its bank accounts and fund ledgers. A $4,603 finding for recovery was issued against former Director Daniel Downard.

A special audit of the task force released on Jan. 8, 2015 found Downard gave his wife a new task force cell phone and accrued $1,333 in monthly access charges and fees. The special audit issued $1,568 in findings for recovery against Downard, which he repaid during the audit period. 

Downard pleaded guilty in November 2014 to felony counts of theft in office, unauthorized use of property and attempted tampering with evidence. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison on Jan. 12, 2015 and released on March 10, 2015.

A full copy of this report is available online.



The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,900 state and local government agencies.  Under the direction of Auditor Dave Yost, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies and promotes transparency in government.

Ben Marrison
Director of Communications