Former TDC director bought car with county funds

Published: Monday, October 22, 2012 at 10:10 AM.

“I asked Mark what kind of vehicle he’d gotten and he said ‘a Porsche,’ ” Zimmerman said. “I said, ‘That makes no sense. A Porsche doesn’t fit the profile of our target audience, and a foreign-made vehicle won’t go over well in a military community.’ ”

Zimmerman also told Bellinger he wasn’t following proper purchasing procedures.

“We negotiate (a purchase) ahead of time,” Zimmerman said he told him.

Zimmerman said he was able to persuade Bellinger to rethink the promotion using the Porsche. Instead, a “World’s Greatest Soccer Mom” promotion in which a minivan was given away turned out to be a resounding success.

“He told us not to worry about the Porsche, that he was going to return the Porsche, get the money back and apply the money to the van,” Zimmerman said.

But Bellinger didn’t return the Porsche and get the money back.

What he did, eventually, was trade in the Porsche for a 2011 Subaru he drove right up until he killed himself May 4 in Alabama as the extent of his thefts from the county began to be uncovered.

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