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South Bend Activist/Felon Banned From County-City Building

Vernado Malone Twitter Picture
Federally Convicted Con Man/Activist, Vernado Malone — Photo: Twitter

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — REAL News Michiana has learned activist/convicted felon, Vernado Malone, has been banned from entering the County-City Building in Downtown South Bend. In fact, the city-funded activist isn’t allowed within 300 feet of the hub of St. Joseph County’s government. Malone is the founder of the non-profit, Justice for Michiana, which was designed to assist families of homicide victims with funeral arrangements. However, last year RNM uncovered a scheme in which Malone was taking full-body nude photographs of the deceased at his partner funeral home, then sharing those photos with random members of the public. Since uncovering that story, the Indiana Attorney General’s Office has opened an investigation and two families of the deceased have filed lawsuits against Malone and Alford’s Mortuary.

It turns out, an employee of the St. Joseph County Voter Registration Office has an active Protection Order against Malone, preventing him from being within 300 feet of her and her place of employment. The Voter Registration Office is located on the 4th floor of the County-City Building. Currently, security at the County-City Building has a photograph of Malone behind their desk reminding them of Malone’s banishment.

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In April, a St. Joseph County Judge ordered Malone pay nearly $10,000 in attorney’s fees for the woman was just granted the protection order against him. Malone stalked and harassed the victim both individually and through his non-profit’s social media accounts. He falsely called her a prostitute, racist, criminal and adulterer. The woman is also suing Malone for defamation.

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The woman who Malone has been attacking was a key witness to uncovering a scheme in which Malone was taking and sharing nude photographs of dead bodies from a local funeral home. Since helping to expose that scheme, Malone and his proxies have relentlessly stalked and attacked the woman. He even unsuccessfully attempted to work with the NAACP to harass the woman further.

Malone also attempted to have the order lifted, claiming he was a member of the media. However, the judge also declined Malone’s attempt to lift the protection order based on those claims stating “Mr. Malone did not submit credible evidence that he is a member of the media.”

RNM has also discovered a partner of Malone’s who used to work in the Voter Registration Office, Aisha Avance, has recently resigned. Avance was also part of the dead body photographing scheme. She is also currently being sued in a case of grant fraud, also stemming from an RNM investigation. Avance attempted to have a protection order against RNM for investigating her alleged crimes, but a judge dismissed the action.

CITY FUNDS CONVICTED FELON

Malone is a multiple convicted federal felon. Despite his record, the City of South Bend helped to fund his non-profit through a city grant to help stop violent crime. Federal court records show a Vernado Malone in the Northern Indiana District, with a criminal record spanning more than a decade.

In 1999, Vernado Malone was sentenced to 15 months in federal prison for credit card fraud. He was ordered to pay more than $17,000 in restitution.

In 2005, Vernado Malone was sentenced to 46 months in federal prison for Conspiracy to Defraud the United States and Aiding and Abetting Forfeiture Allegation. He was ordered to pay $120,000 in restitution.

In 2015, Vernado Malone was sentenced to 37 months in federal prison for Mail Fraud and Aggravated Identity Theft. He was ordered to pay more than $50,000 in restitution.

There are also several state level charges and convictions, however, Malone petitioned the court to expunge those records.

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