Head of Denver nonprofit Impact Locally arrested, charged with stealing funds
The head of a Denver-based nonprofit organization that provides services for individuals experiencing homelessness was arrested Sunday night and charged with stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars in grant funding and fraudulently using other charities’ tax-exempt numbers to avoid paying taxes, prosecutors alleged.
Travis Singhaus, 47, who runs Impact Locally, was taken into custody Sunday night at Denver International Airport after returning from an overseas trip, the Denver District Attorney’s Office said in a Monday news release. He’s been charged with eight felonies, including theft, charitable fraud, forgery and criminal impersonation.
Singhaus allegedly stole $349,000 in grant funds from a Denver philanthropic organization by using another charity’s tax number to claim Impact Locally had 501(c)(3) charitable status, prosecutors said.
“Singhaus has never registered any of his entities with the Colorado Secretary of State or with the Internal Revenue Service nor has Singhaus obtained charitable or tax exempt status with the IRS or the State of Colorado,” prosecutors allege.
The nonprofit leader has allegedly been using Impact entities since at least 2017 as the “conduit to receive donation funds from individuals and entities representing that his Impact entities were nonprofit charities,” according to Singhaus’ arrest warrant. He’s been aware since at least May 2018 of Colorado’s requirement to register his entities with the state as nonprofit charities, prosecutors said.
Impact Locally runs a host of programs for those experiencing homelessness in Denver, including haircuts, sack lunches and taking kids hiking in the mountains. The nonprofit serves more than 5,000 individuals every month, the organization says on its website.
Company representatives could not immediately be reached for comment Monday.
Impact began in 2012, the result of five friends getting together once a month to “pitch in and give back by serving those in need,” according to its website. The organization has over a thousand people volunteering each month in 10 cities across the country.
“We know that unfortunately we live in a world where other individuals and organizations have take (sic) advantage of people’s trust,” the organization says on an FAQ section of its website under the heading “What percentage of my financial donation goes towards your efforts?”
Singhaus in November said he was forced to close Impact Humanity, the organization’s free clothing store in Five Points, after repeated break-ins, 9News reported.
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