Former head of Boston’s elder services indicted for allegedly stealing thousands meant for city’s seniors

The former head of a Boston elder services program was indicted Thursday for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars intended to benefit the city’s seniors.

When Alfred Davis was the director of elder services for the Boston Housing Authority in 2008, he received a grant of $105,000. The grant came from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, who named him a “Community Health Leader,’’ and specified that the money should be used to help improve the health of Boston seniors living in public housing. He also received a $20,000 stipend to be used for his personal development as a community health leader.

But Davis, who worked for the agency for 20 years, never disclosed that the grant funds were intended to benefit elderly residents, according to the Suffolk County District Attorney’s office.

Davis is accused of spending $20,000 for his personal use, including travel expenses in Las Vegas, New Orleans, and Barbados, expensive meals, a mattress, virility supplements, and collectible coins.

He allegedly forged an invoice for a senior fitness program that had already been funded and received $9,900. He also made a series of ATM withdrawals from the grant account totaling $5,400, authorities said.

Davis used some of the grant funds to purchase taxi vouchers for seniors to travel to dental appointments, but later requested reimbursement for the cost of the trips, according to authorities. The clinic paid Davis approximately $5,222 in travel and other reimbursements that he was not due out of funds from a separate grant from the Sunshine Lady Foundation, authorities said.

As a result of the theft, the Elder/Disabled Housing Division of the Boston Housing Authority was eliminated and its operations subsumed by other City of Boston offices.


“This defendant was a trusted member of the elder services community,’’ District Attorney Dan Conley said in a statement. “But rather than fulfilling the commitment he made to Boston’s seniors, he allegedly used his position of trust to cash in at the expense of vulnerable elders and the agencies dedicated to meeting their needs.’’

Davis was indicted on two counts of larceny over $250 and single counts of forgery and uttering. His arraignment has not yet been scheduled.

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