Loose Lips

Former MPD Tech Boss Charged With Theft

The former IT boss for the Metropolitan Police Department has been charged with theft for allegedly using city-funded cell phone service after he was fired, according to court records.

Travis Hudnall was fired as the executive director of MPD's Office of Information and Technology in June 2010, according to a report in the Examiner. (The report is no longer online.) Once hailed by Police Chief Cathy Lanier as a" visionary," Hudnall was escorted out his office and a police bulletin issued not let him in any MPD facilities, the Examiner reported. The paper cited unnamed sources saying that Hudnall clashed repeatedly with then Mayor Adrian Fenty's "tech bureaucrats."

But police say Hudnall, whose job included purchasing cell phone plans for MPD, kept using his city-owned cell phone and was making regular calls for six months after he was fired, until MPD eventually disconnected his service. Police say Hudnall's post-MPD phone usage cost the taxpayers $323.65.

Hudnall has pleaded not guilty to the misdemeanor theft charge. His attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A warrant was issued for Hudnall's arrest in early 2011, and reissued in January of this year per the request of the U.S. Attorney's Office, according to court records.

UPDATE: While Hudnall had a warrant out for his arrest, he was winning sole-source contracts with the D.C. library as an IT consultant, including one contract worth $90,000.

  • RealDC

    What? Man, who did this guy piss off? A warrant issued for his arrest over a cellphone?? A total of $323.65 usage charge?? I know stealing is wrong, even if its a penny but their has to be more to this than cellphone usage.

  • Drez

    I agree this story seems... incomplete.

  • LOL

    I agree. This is a lot of digging for a cell phone usage charge. Court records, old newspaper articles, contracts. What he did was wrong. But, this seems like info that was put out because somebody's angry.

  • truth hurts

    Ditto. Except for the sole source contracts. They might be worth further exploration.

  • LOL

    Maybe. I don't see how the contract is related to the outstanding warrant. Plus, I don't see a big deal with the sole source contract. When I clicked the link, I was actually impressed with how easy it was to see what the library does.

    If the info was hidden or poorly put together, I would agree with Truth. But, this still smells like somebody has been watching too many episodes of Revenge.

  • nowaitadaminit

    "clashed repeatedly with then Mayor Fenty's 'tech beuraucrats'......" Hence the long arm of the law and vengeful assholes. Deliver me from the patient hater.

    But there is much more to this situation. Might just come back to bite a few on those asses.

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  • ThisCityisLaughable

    Meanwhile, Sir Kwame gets one day in chains, and DC's master thief ringleader Nat "I didn't see nothing" Ghandi continues to keep an eye on DC's money. Man, you lemmings (aka DC residents) just never learn. Never will. Morons.

  • drez

    psst: fenty's been gone for two years. The warrant was issued during the Gray admin.

  • …………..

    Maybe the REAL question should be why the Police Department failed to follow standard operating procedures and collect all Departmental property upon his termination. The NORMAL procedure is for you to have to turn in all property before being given your final pay.

    If people can leave the Department with cell phones, what else are they leaving with? Shields? Computers? Guns? Cars?

    It sounds to me like the Department is trying to cover its tracks for one of its many breakdowns in protocol and policy. Why would the Department leave a phone ACTIVE for 6 months after terminating an employee? If if this ONE phone was left on for 6 months, how many OTHER phones has the Department accidentally "left on" after people leave the Force, costing tax payers?

    It looks like MULTIPLE people inside the Department from the Chief on down are not doing their job properly. PERIOD.

    As far as sole source contracts - These are COMMON all over the District government and there exists criteria in which these are very legal in many instances.

  • nowaitadaminit

    You know Drez, I don't know why I even bother. Yessss!! The warrant was issued in early 2011 but the man was terminated in mid 2010 and had the DC Gov phone all that time. Same Chief and probably some of the same Indians. The only one who wasn't able to stick around was yo boy the Feinty One: Himself. But who gives a fuck about a $326 cell phone bill? Bet it costs more than that to file and serve a warrant. They could have deducted it from his final check or sent him a bill. DUHHHHH

    Like I said, it sounds like the petty work of infantile vengeance seeking Fenty leftovers. Maybe we should send the warrant issuer a bill for wasting taxpayers money and/or initiate a counter suit for frivolous and malicious filings.

    I'm just as sick and tired of your anal retentive ass as I am of the constant barrage of criticism heaped upon our elected officials. Go suck a.......red lollipop or sumpin', might keep YOUR loose lips busy for a while.

  • CarolineM

    Stealing is stealing is stealing.

    IT amazes me how many folks here are trying to justify the charges by invoking the classical accuse the accuser Ad Hominem BS. Standard operating procedures been followed or not when he was let go; this dude abused his position and is a disgrace to the name of the agency which he has worked on. No one forced him to keep using a departmental cell phone and continue to use it for six months.
    Now; that some arrogant egotistical stuff right there.

    Which brings us to the question: what else did this ex MPD CIO steal when he was operating a $25 million budget for the IT Division?

  • …………..

    I see MPD continues to keep some of the most grammatically-challenged people on board. Unfortunately, the ability to formulate coherent sentences, understanding of subject/verb agreement, and knowledge of proper selection and placement of punctuation appear to be in very short supply at MPD. So in an effort to assist those who are, apparently, still in the very FORMATIVE stages of developing their written language skills, here's a Preposition usage tip: A person works "FOR" agency, not "ON" one.

    Abysmal grammar and butchery of the English language aside, you are absolutely right. A person controlling MILLIONS of dollars in budget money has an opportunity to steal LOTS of different things of HIGH VALUE. For this reason, it does not make sense that a CTO, given the large salary one typically earns, would steal $300 in cell phone services.

    A person is handling millions of dollars a day but chooses to steal JUST $300 of it for no apparent reason?

    Sorry. Although that may make sense to some people, it sounds completely illogical to anybody familiar with how corruption normally works in the government. People in positions of power who are corrupt steal money off the TOP through white-collar crimes: They do not "go down" for street-level, blue-collar crimes, like knocking off a $300 cell phone.

    This allegation makes about as much sense as accusing Cathy Lanier of snatching some lady's purse on the street. It sounds stupid, orchestrated, and concocted.

    I'm pretty sure with the money he was making, he could have easily afforded a cell phone or as many cell phones as he wanted. At that salary, $300 is pocket change.

  • Drez

    I don't know why you bother, either.
    It's clear that the warrant was filed under this administration.
    Your attempt to blame Thais on the previous is ridiculous and pathetic.

  • Robert

    Please. Can't believe this is called "theft". $323.00 for six months probably means that the phone was not being used. Why not produce the cellular phone invoice for proof of usage? If he was really making calls for six months, the charges would be much higher. The department should have absorbed this cost since it failed to disconnect all telephones lines assigned to this former employee. This man has been arrested and his career adversely affected for governmental nonsense. Except for vengeance, why destroy a person for $323.00? He certainly could have repaid the money rather than have the Police Department expose this matter to a newspaper. Seems more like character assassination. Hope he has a good lawyer. Wouldn't stop until this arrest is expunged.

  • Carol Cross

    Really why is this news. The title of your article leads me to believe that there was a, “Great Crime going on in Washington, DC government.” I currently owe this amount on my SPRINT invoice for two months. If Mr. Hudnall owes that much for 6 months than it’s not because of usage. They should have just, “Cut the Phone Off” “I wonder what is really going on at MPD. Why are they wasting TAX PAYERS money on a WARRANT that’s probably more than what is owed by Mr. Hundall. Is this news or are you in cohorts with someone who is purposely slandering this man’s name and negatively impacting him and his family’s livelihood. I suggest Lawyers need to contact him immediately; for he definitely has a GREAT LAW Suit ahead.