AKRON, Ohio —
A former construction executive took the witness stand for a second day in the corruption trial of former Cuyahoga County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora and his co-defendant Michael Gabor.
Steve Pumper, the former DAS executive who pled guilty to nine charges, including bribery, admitted he would still be doing business as usual had he not been caught by the FBI.
Pumper told the court he needed help closing a deal on a parking garage and agreed to pay Dimora $35,000 for his help. He said he paid Dimora in installments every two weeks; that he went to the former commissioner’s home and gave him envelopes with $2,000 to $3,000 in cash.
“One of the last payments I gave to him on the end, I said I owed him $2,500 and he said I owed him $5,000,” said Pumper from the witness stand.
Pumper testified that before he could make his last payment to Dimora, he was approached by the FBI.
Pumper said he tried to tell federal agents the money he gave to a Cleveland building inspector was a loan, but they insisted it was a bribe. They gave him the night to decide if he would cooperate with the investigation.
Pumper said he was facing up to 20 years behind bars if he did not assist with the federal investigation. Pumper testified he could receive a sentence of six to 10 years if he cooperated.