DMV Employee goes down for taking bribes

Former DMV Employee Sentenced in Commercial Driver’s License Bribery Conspiracy CaseCalifornia Department of Motor Vehicles, Office of Internal Affairs assisted with investigation

“This crime not only put the public in danger, it tarnishes the reputation of the hardworking, trustworthy public service professionals who handle government documents with care and integrity.  Our gratitude to the DMV investigators and other law enforcement officers who investigated this case and put a stop to this dangerous and criminal activity.” – CSLEA President Alan Barcelona 

SACRAMENTO- On November 3, 2022, Shawana Denise Harris, 52, of Phelan, was sentenced to five years in prison for participating in a conspiracy to commit bribery, to commit unauthorized access of a computer, and to commit identity fraud.

According to court documents, Harris was a long-time DMV employee who had the ability to update test scores for commercial driver’s license applicants in California. Using her position as a public employee at the DMV, Harris accepted bribes in exchange for fraudulently updating test scores for people pursuing commercial driver’s licenses. For at least 185 commercial license applicants, Harris used her access to DMV computers to enter fraudulent test scores indicating the applicants had passed written and/or behind the wheel commercial drive tests, when in reality the applicants had not passed those tests. Harris and a co-conspirator were typically paid at least $1,500 per applicant for fraudulently updating test scores, resulting in approximately $277,500 worth of corrupt bribes.

This case was the product of an investigation by the California Department of Motor Vehicles, Office of Internal Affairs; the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Homeland Security Investigations; and the Department of Transportation, Office of Inspector General.

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