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Arkansas treasurer's office staffer chided in nonprofit's investigation of campaign emails

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LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas — Officials at the American Cancer Society's Cancer Action Network released the results Friday of an internal investigation into campaign emails sent by a former employee from the nonprofit's email system.

Jason Brady, now the deputy chief of staff for Arkansas Treasurer Dennis Milligan, inappropriately used the nonprofit's computer, email and conference call line while working on Milligan's campaign, a violation of internal policy, Action Network spokesman Ray Carson said in an email.

"The extent and nature of the use of these resources suggest that they were likely misused intentionally," Carson wrote. "We are satisfied this was an isolated incident. However, in light of this matter we will reinforce our organizational policy with staff."

Brady was placed on paid leave for three days during an investigation into the emails by the treasurer's office. Grant Wallace, a spokesman for the office, previously said that investigation showed no wrongdoing while Brady was employed by the state and he returned to work without further discipline.

Both Milligan and Brady sent checks to the nonprofit to "make them whole" for any misuse of its property earlier this year, but Carson said those checks were returned because of the ongoing investigation. Neither Milligan nor Brady would specify how much money they had sent or comment about the checks, which were issued from personal accounts.

Wallace said Friday that the treasurer's office would not be making an official comment because it was a personal matter not involving government activities.

Milligan has had several issues involving his staff since taking office, including an employee who was fired that filed a defamation lawsuit against Chief of Staff Jim Harris. Milligan was later added to that lawsuit, which was moved to federal court earlier this month.

The lawsuit alleges that Harris published false statements about former employee David Singer's mental health to co-workers and the media, and that he talked about Singer's wife, who died of breast cancer in June 2014, in a "disgusting manner." Documents filed in that case Thursday show Singer has added to the complaint an accusation that he was fired because of a perceived disability and that he's contacted the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

A private attorney hired by Milligan's office, Byron Freeland, filed a separate motion Thursday saying a request for a name-clearing hearing should be denied because it was not filed until after Singer filed the lawsuit.

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