Michael Cody Monroe, the 23-year-old former staffer for U.S. Rep. David Wu now accused of stealing $12,000 from the congressman's campaign, failed to appear at his arraignment this afternoon.
Portland Police arrested Monroe Wednesday night and released him from Multnomah County custody about two hours later. A spokesman for the police department this morning said Monroe faced accusations of stealing $10,200 from Wu's campaign. But a probable cause affidavit from Multnomah County Circuit Court puts that figure at $12,000. It also offers a few details about the police investigation that started after Wu's district director, Mary K. Elliot-Parham, contacted Portland Police. Elliot-Parham told police the campaign had issued six suspicious checks to Monroe between March 22 and May 2 totaling $12,000, according to the affidavit.
"Monroe eventually admitted knowing that the checks were supposed to be used [for] legitimate campaign expenses but that he was 'broke, homeless and desperate,'" the affidavit reads. It goes on to say Monroe filled out the checks, signed Elliot-Parham's name and cashed the checks.
Two of those checks, including a $2,500 "bonus," appeared on Wu's recent first-quarter fundraising report. That was odd because Monroe was the only Wu staffer to get a "bonus."
A message left with Monroe at 3 pm Wednesday before his 9:30 pm arrest last night has not been returned.
Before going to work for Wu, Monroe had worked for Bill Bradbury's 2010 gubernatorial campaign. Earlier this week, Bradbury told the Associated Press Wu was "damaged goods."
Several reporters gathered this afternoon at the Multnomah County Justice Center to hear Monroe's arraignment. Court records show it has been rescheduled for May 19 because he failed to appear today.
WW intern Nate Gilles contributed to this report.