South Dakota officials say a couple who died in a September 2015 murder-suicide were looting hundreds of thousands of dollars from an organization that helped Native American students prepare for college, writes the Associated Press. Scott Westerhuis shot his wife, Nicole, and their four children before killing himself at their home near Platte, S.D., hours after authorities notified Mid-Central Educational Cooperative that it was losing a $4.3 million federal contract due to financial and accounting questions.
The couple worked in the business office at Mid-Central and, according to investigators, shifted money from its bank account to another nonprofit with which they had ties, the American Indian Institute for Innovation. Both groups received grants under GEAR UP, a federal college-readiness program. Authorities said the Mr. and Ms. Westerhuis took more than $1 million in total. Three others associated with Mid-Central and GEAR UP face felony charges stemming from the investigation launched after the killings.