LITTLE ROCK — Arkansas Lt. Gov. Mark Darr told investigators that "carelessness" on his part led to the ethics and campaign finance violations that ultimately led to his planned resignation, the state Ethics Commission said in a report released Thursday.
The panel released hundreds of pages of documents related to the probe into Darr's campaign and office spending, a month after he agreed to an $11,000 fine for multiple ethics and campaign-finance violations. Darr, a Republican who was elected in 2010, earlier this month announced he would step down Saturday because of the violations.
According to the report, Darr told ethics staff in November that he expected to be fined over the violations, which he insisted were "mistakes of carelessness."
"I never intended to take money that I was not entitled to, but I failed to follow proper accounting procedures," Darr said in a statement he provided to investigators.
Darr agreed in December to the fines imposed by the state Ethics Commission for 11 separate violations, which included using his campaign funds for personal items and improper travel reimbursements from the state. Darr was not available for comment, his office said Thursday.
The report detailed more than $31,000 in campaign funds that Darr used on food, fuel and other personal items since taking office in 2011. Darr had loaned his campaign more than $170,000 in 2010, but the ethics commission said that spending the funds on personal items was not a legal way to retire that debt. The figure also includes more than $5,700 Darr spent after he retired the debt his campaign owed him.