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Keely Thompson, the former Columbia Heights boxing gym operator accused of blowing $500,000 in city grants meant for at-risk kids on his own lavish lifestyle, has a plea hearing scheduled for tomorrow afternoon in federal court, according to a judge’s order signed today.
Thompson and his wife Bianca Thompson, who were both indicted last November, allegedly stole the money from 2004 to 2010, according to the indictment. Instead of helping teens learn boxing, the grants allegedly went to cruises, a trip to Atlantic City, even a Ferris wheel rental.
Some of the funds were meant to help the Thompsons operate a gym on 11th Street’s old Meyer Elementary School, a lease Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham helped Thompson obtain from the city. Graham also reportedly tipped the city off to Thompson’s alleged crimes.
Originally, Thompson had a status hearing scheduled for yesterday, but it was changed to a plea hearing today. Thompson’s attorney didn’t respond to a request for comment, and no criminal information or plea deal has been posted online yet. LL will update later as necessary.
Boxing photo by Shutterstock