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Copyright 2018 The Arizona Daily Star Sep 30, 2018
Arizona Daily Star (Tucson)
The man charged with stealing more than $50,000 from a youth football organization paid his water bill and rent using the Marana Broncos' bank account, police records show.
But Steven Leslie Marshall Jr. didn't stop there: During the Oro Valley Police Department's 16-month investigation, detectives interviewed 15 people associated with the Broncos and found evidence that Marshall also used the association's money to pay for car repairs, vehicle registration, hotel rooms at two local resorts. He also purchased braces for himself and his family, police reports show.
The Broncos are one of several teams affiliated with the Tucson Youth Football and Spirit Federation, a nonprofit organization that caters to thousands of children each year.
Marshall pleaded not guilty in Pima County Superior Court Friday to eight felony charges of theft, forgery and fraudulent schemes. He has a case management conference scheduled for Nov. 1.
The Star has made several attempts to contact Marshall, all of which have gone unanswered. Marshall's girlfriend, Jamie Medina, sent an email last week praising Marshall's impact on kids and families over 30 years of coaching. She did not respond to a request for comment on the charges facing Marshall.
TYFSF has banned Marshall for life.
Marana Broncos board members reported Marshall to police in May 2017, shortly after his sudden departure as the association's president. He had held the position for eight years. The board discovered irregular financial activity dating to his time as president, police reports show.
It wasn't the first time: One year earlier, a parent of two Broncos players hired an attorney specifically to request financial information from Marshall. He never provided the requested information, according to the Oro Valley police report, which the Star obtained through a public records request. The attorney then sent an "intent to sue letter" to Marshall and Broncos executive board members.
Marshall eventually provided a document that he said included the Broncos' financial information. A witness said the document made no sense and didn't answer any of the attorney's questions, the police report said.
Marshall stepped down as president on March 1, 2017. The new president and board members attempted to access the team's bank account the following day, and were told that only Marshall had access to the money, according to the report.
Board members eventually learned that Marshall had closed the bank account the day before he resigned as president. Bank records later showed that Marshall asked for a debit card linked to the account - against TYFSF bylaws - and used it to make personal purchases. Board members told police that they believe Marshall was responsible for roughly $90,000 worth of debit charges, checks and unpaid debts, the report says.
Police also spoke to Marshall's employer, Bolt Athletics, who told police that he recently took on $16,000 in debt from the Marana Broncos. As of June 2017, Marshall had only paid back $1,500 of the debt.
Marshall worked as an independent part-time commission-only salesman with Bolt, but has not been with the company for nearly two years, president and CEO Cedar Rihani told the Star.
"Steve Marshall's actions do not represent Bolt Athletics in any way and we most certainly do not condone them if the allegations against Mr Marshall are found to be true," Rihani said. "Our understanding was that Steve wanted to transfer the debt to him because the organization couldn't afford to pay it off."
Oro Valley detectives served subpoenas at several local banks and businesses, requesting documents and receipts affiliated with purchases made from the Broncos account. They found evidence that he used the Broncos money to pay for a rental car, hotel room and merchandise from Adidas and Foot Locker during a visit with his son to Northern California and made purchases for a basketball organization.
Marshall's ex-wife previously told the Star that he was running a for-profit basketball club called Team Orange.
Board members also told police that they believed Marshall used Broncos funds to finance a 2016 trip to Florida for an all-star game, which was also against TYFSF policy.
Police first contacted Marshall in April and attempted to set up an interview. Following months of unreturned phone calls, police got a warrant to "ping" Marshall's location through his cell phone.
He was arrested Sept. 21 at his father's house.
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