Former office manager at process serving company testifies in perjury case

Maurice Carroll’s former office manager testified Wednesday that Carroll regularly instructed her to sign affidavits falsely swearing that she had served defendants with court documents.

Vilisia Coleman, 47, who worked for Carroll’s process serving company between 2007 and 2010, told a jury that Carroll sometimes handed her stacks of 20 to 30 affidavits to sign unlawfully.

On many occasions throughout her employment, Coleman testified, she was told to sign affidavits in the absence of a notary public, which also is illegal.

Coleman, who pleaded guilty last year to perjury and filing false court documents, spent 90 minutes on the witness stand during the second day of testimony in Carroll’s trial in the courtroom of District Judge Elissa Cadish.

Carroll, 43, a former Las Vegas police officer, is facing felony perjury and forgery charges in a scheme to file false affidavits in Las Vegas, Henderson and North Las Vegas justice courts.

The charges focus on phony court affidavits Carroll is accused of putting together in civil cases involving one of his clients, debt collector Richland Holdings.

Carroll is accused of failing to serve documents in 17 Richland Holdings cases in May and June 2010, though he certified in Justice Court affidavits that he had.

As a consequence, people named in the affidavits were not notified they were being sued by Richland Holdings.

Coleman testified Wednesday that an affidavit scheme also occurred at Carroll’s company, On Scene Mediations, during a two-week period in January 2010 after Las Vegas Justice Court officials returned boxes of affidavits that had been signed improperly.

Court officials determined that the original affidavits needed to be redone, Coleman said.

In many cases, the process server who signed those affidavits had left the company and current employees were instructed by Carroll to do the re-signing, though they didn’t actually serve the court papers.

Carroll contends that he did not scheme to falsify any affidavits, and he blames Coleman for his legal troubles.

During cross-examination Wednesday, Coleman became upset on the witness stand after Carroll’s lawyer, Chief Deputy Public Defender Will Ewing, pressed her about her abrupt departure from On Scene Mediations in May 2010.

"I’m really sick of this," she said. "This man tried to take away my freedom, and I’m sick of this."

Justice Court officials believe Carroll’s company, which no longer is serving documents, might have harmed the court system over a period of years.

The company, which had operated without a license for nearly seven years, was involved in some 25,000 civil cases in Las Vegas Justice Court, officials have said.

Contact Jeff German at jgerman@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-8135.

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