A former DuPage County Forest Preserve District employee has been sentenced to 180 days in jail for illegally steering forest preserve contracts to a private business.
David Tepper, 52, of the 300 block of Franklin Avenue in River Forest, was sentenced to 180 days in county jail, two years of probation and fined $83,000, according to a statement from the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s office. He was found guilty of 29 felony counts of unlawful participation and one felony count of official misconduct in October.
As an employee of the district, Tepper gained authorization from the forest preserve board to enter the forest preserve into a contract with USA Digital without informing the board he worked for USA Digital, the state’s attorney’s office said. He then collected an $80,000 commission from USA Digital.
“Mr. Tepper’s actions are indefensible,” DuPage County State’s Attorney Robert B. Berlin said in the statement. “As a public employee, Mr. Tepper owed it to the public to conduct himself in a professional manner with the best interests of the DuPage County Forest Preserve in mind. Mr. Tepper did quite the opposite.”