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Councilman's boyfriend steals $300K for drag biz

Posted: 2:15 PM, Sep 30, 2015
Updated: 2015-09-30 14:15:00-04

The boyfriend of a Port Clinton councilman faces up to 11 years in prison for stealing $300,000 from his boyfriend's parents to support his drag queen management company.

Clarence Michael Ousley Jr., 30, pleaded guilty last month to theft from a person in a protected class.

According to court documents obtained by newsnet5.com, Ousley briefly lived with his boyfriend, Councilman Gabe Below, and Below's elderly parents, Gary and Mary, after the couple met in 2008.

Last December, the family became concerned that Ousley was stealing from them after noticing suspicious activity in accounts linked to Gary's name.

The family told Port Clinton police Ousley had access to the family's accounts because he had been helping with finances ever since Gary was diagnosed with a form of dementia. 

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Court documents show Ousley was, unbeknownst to the family, taking money from Gary's retirement account and opening credit cards in Gary's name. According to Gabe's sister, Haley, 15 credit cards were opened without permission between May 2009 and December 2014, with outstanding balances of more than $38,000.

According to court documents, the fraudulent spending began right around the time Ousley started his drag queen management company, Shooting Star Management, out of Columbus. Gabe said that was the only consistent job Ousley had since he was released from jail after serving time for unlawful sexual conduct with a minor in 2010. 

In January, the family found mail in the garage that indicated more fraudulent transactions, including falsified IRS forms, and additional credit cards.

Court documents show, in total, Ousley stole around $300,000 to help support his business.

Ousley was indicted by a grand jury on three counts in May. On Aug. 6 he made a deal, pleading guilty to theft from a person in a protected class so that his other two charges would be dropped.

Ousley is scheduled to be sentenced in Ottawa County Common Pleas Court on Oct. 7.