Bond hearing delayed for former Exchange Club president wanted in connection to missing funds

Sheriff's office investigates former exchange club president

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Bond hearing for the past exchange club fair president Dennis Lott has been postponed so he can have a mental evaluation, according to officials.

Authorities say they arrested a former Exchange Club of Charleston president wanted in connection to nearly $200,000 of missing funds from Coastal Carolina Fair accounts.

Investigators with the Charleston County Sheriff's Office say 57-year-old Dennis Lott was arrested during a traffic stop in Walterboro on Friday at 7 p.m. CCSO officials say officers with the Walterboro Police Department apprehended Lott who was spotted driving his car in the City of Walterboro.

Lott is expected to have a bond hearing on Saturday.

On Friday afternoon, CCSO officials announced that they were searching for Lott after he failed to turn himself in. An arrest warrant was then issued for Lott on breach of trust.

Earlier today, the sheriff's office held a press conference on allegations that Lott wrote a check for $190,000 on July 19, 2013 to himself from club funds, and cashed it.

Investigators say on Thursday, the sheriff's office was requested by the Coastal Carolina Fair to begin an investigation into a report of missing money from the organization's bank account. According to an incident report, the theft was reported to deputies by Fair Spokesman Joe Bolchoz.

Coastal Carolina Fair members reported that Lott, who was president at the time, wrote a check belonging to the fair out to himself in the amount of $190,000 and cashed it for personal gain.

The sheriff's office says the unauthorized transaction was discovered during an audit conducted by the fair.

The current fair president was notified of the missing funds in February, Bolchoz said. He added that the total missing could exceed the $190,000 amount.

Bolchoz says the theft will not affect the fair's charity and he says the fair will increase the amount donated this year by $20,000. He also says this year's fair will not be affected.

Officials say over $800,000 was donated to charities by the Exchange Club of Charleston last year.

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