Former DHS Worker Nabbed in TBI Misconduct Case, Accused of Trading Sex for Food Assistance Funds

Thursday, September 03, 2015 | 12:11pm

NASHVILLE – Special Agents from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation have obtained indictments for a Nashville man accused of misusing his position as an Eligibility Counselor for the Department of Human Services.

After receiving information from the Tennessee Department of Human Services, and at the request of DHS and the 20th District Attorney General Glenn Funk, TBI Special Agents began investigating Alfred Awonuga on March 18th. During the course of the investigation, Agents developed information that from March 2014 through March 2015, Awonuga used his position to attempt to get a participant in the state’s food assistance program to have sex with him in exchange for benefits. Agents further learned Awonuga manipulated the program in a separate incident by obtaining benefits for an applicant who would otherwise not be eligible in an attempt to get the participant to have sex with him. When she declined, the investigation revealed Awonuga facilitated the termination of her benefits and later communicated with her that he could assist her in getting her benefits reinstated, while continuing to express a desire in a sexual relationship. The agency subsequently terminated his employment.

On August 28th, the Davidson County Grand Jury returned indictments for Awonuga, charging the 48-year-old with six counts of Official Misconduct and one count of Attempted Official Misconduct. Authorities arrested Awonuga and booked him into the Davidson County Jail, where at the time of this release, he was being held on $20,000 bond.