Patricia Duarte, the previous chief financial officer of the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence (FCADV), was apprehended after a lengthy three-year inquiry. Her arrest was related to alleged financial discrepancies within the coalition, which was previously funded by taxpayers. Duarte, alongside former CEO Tiffany Carr, is accused of misusing organization funds.
Carr, aged 55, stepped down from the FCADV in 2019 due to health concerns and is expected to surrender to officials. Investigations into the organization’s financial dealings began in 2020 and were headed by the Office of the Statewide Prosecutor and the governor’s Office of Inspector General. Duarte faces charges including grand theft, fraud, and document falsification.
The Miami Herald and Herald/Times had previously published a series of articles detailing Carr’s misuse of her authority within the FCADV. Despite being heralded as a champion against domestic violence, Carr allegedly exploited her position to increase her compensation, all while domestic violence survivors in Florida were deprived of essential services.
The FCADV held a significant role in managing an estimated $52 million annually for local agencies dedicated to supporting victims of domestic violence. The misuse of funds was glaringly evident when, under Carr’s tenure, numerous domestic violence centers in Florida faced financial hardships.