Columbus – The City of Marion’s (Marion County) former utility supervisor has repaid $29,779 of the amount she stole from the city’s utility department, according to an audit released today by Auditor of State Dave Yost.
Brenda Nwosu, who pleaded guilty to theft in office in 2015, failed to post $17,375 in payments to 71 customer accounts from January 2011 through August 2014. In some cases, she attempted to conceal her theft by making adjustments to accounts when payments were not posted.
During the same period, Nwosu neglected to apply another $16,901 in proceeds from 25 sheriff’s sales checks to the appropriate accounts. She instead posted the funds as payments to unrelated accounts to hide that she was stealing cash.
“You can only cover up your tracks for so long,” Auditor Yost said. “Sooner or later, a vigilant citizen or public employee will pick up on the trail.”
Nwosu pleaded guilty to a third-degree felony count of theft in office on April 10, 2015. She was sentenced to 18 months in prison on Nov. 12, 2015 and ordered to pay $34,276 in restitution. As of Aug. 18, 2016, she has repaid $29,779 of that amount. A finding for recovery for the remaining $4,497 was issued against Nwosu.
Since the theft was detected, the city has implemented several fraud-prevention practices including unannounced audits of cash drawers and improved anti-fraud education for employees.
A full copy of this report is available online.
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.