Rome Police files are providing much more information about a Shorter University student accused of taking $32,000 in an elaborate scheme — perhaps in cooperation with two other men from the Marietta area. The suspect says it started with advertising he found on a smart phone app.
Tavare Quinsad Watson, 19, of Gainesville, Ga., was arrested Sept. 21 on charges of embezzlement and theft by conversion, the report shows. Police were called to Shorter after university workers found some concerns. According to the arrest reported:
At 6:50 p.m. Sept. 21, police were called to Shorter to a conference room where Tavare Watson was waiting inside.
“Mr. Watson stated that before school started this fall semester, he found an app on his cell phone called Offer Up. The app had multiple ads stating ‘Do you need a bill paid? I pay bills for half the price.” Mr. Watson stated he thought it was a good idea at the time due to his funds being very low and him not receiving any money from the school yet. Mr. Watson stated he contact the ad and a male named J.D. or Dee responded. Mr. Watson stated he gave DJ $200 to begin the process of DJ paying for his tuition.
“Mr. Watson stated he received about $13,000 between Aug. 21 and Sept. 9 from the university as a student refund. The university stated the refund was actually credited on the account before any of the charges were posted. Mr. Watson stated he gave DJ a few thousand dollars each refund he received as dues for DJ paying for his tuition.
“The university stated Mr. Watson’s charges continued to grow and Mr. Watson’s credit account was empty. The university soon caught on to Mr. Watson taking the money out of the account before they could settle charges. The university asked Mr. Watson what he did with all the money. The university stated Mr. Watson would not give any names of the guy ((DJ) who he found on the app. The university stated Mr. Watson also bought a vehicle instead of paying his debt to the school.
“I asked Mr.Watson why he was still using DJ to help pay for his tuition if his tuition was getting paid by his student refunds and scholarships. Mr. Watson stated he just thought it would be easier to pay someone to pay for his tuition. I asked Mr. Watson did the ad in the app not sound suspicious to him. Mr. Watson stated no.
“Mr Watson stated he went to Marietta twice to give DJ money. Mr. Watson also stated DJ came to Shorter University to retrieve money as well. Mr. Watson stated he met another guy in Marietta as well that was friends with DJ but he did not get a name. Mr. Watson stated DH and his friend were both black males in their early 20s, about 6-foo-3 or 6-foot-4 in height and between 210 and 230 (pounds) in weight. Mr. Watson contacted DJ by cell phone number (XXXXXXX).
“I asked Shorter University if they were pressing charges on Mr. Watson and the other two unknown individuals. The university stated they wanted to press charges on Mr. Watson for taking money from the university. The university stated Mr. Watson spent almost $32,000 on other things that was meant to pay for tuition.
“I placed Mr. Watson under arrest for theft by conversion due to him lawfully obtaining funds from Shorter University and knowingly converting the funds to his own use in violation of his legal obligation to the university.”