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Former Volunteer Treasurer Sentenced to Probation, Ordered to Pay Restitution for Theft
Columbus – A former volunteer treasurer who stole tens of thousands of dollars from two groups affiliated with the Shawnee Local School District (Allen County) was sentenced late last week to five years of probation and ordered to pay $51,419 in restitution.
“Stealing from programs geared toward students is just about as low as it gets,” Auditor Yost said. “The community can take comfort in knowing that it will be made whole again now that justice has run its course.”
Allen County Common Pleas Judge David Cheney sentenced Heather O’Connor on March 22 after she pleaded guilty to a count of grand theft in February for stealing $77,587 from the district’s Parent Teacher Committee (PTC) and $9,277 from the Little Indians Volleyball Association.
In addition to five years of probation, O’Connor was ordered to serve 40 hours of community service and pay the remaining funds owed. She had previously paid $35,445, but still owes $42,142 to the PTC and $9,277 to the volleyball association.
As treasurer, O’Connor’s responsibilities included issuing checks and making deposits for the two groups. Investigators and forensic auditors with the Auditor’s Public Integrity Assurance Team determined that she stole cash and wrote herself checks from the bank accounts that she oversaw. She also pocketed cash from PTC fundraising activities.
The Auditor of State’s office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,900 state and local government agencies. Under the direction of Auditor Dave Yost, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies and promotes transparency in government.