The Edmond Sun

Local News

July 10, 2012

Police: $109,454 was embezzled from Edmond church

EDMOND — Detectives are investigating the alleged misuse of $109,454 from an Edmond church, according to a preliminary report released Tuesday by the Edmond Police Department.

The release of the information comes a day after St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, located at Ninth and Boulevard, released a statement regarding the discovery of the financial issue. St. John’s did not disclose the dollar amount in question.

Tuesday’s information from the Police Department comes from a preliminary public incident report. It documents that the money was embezzled, names the victim as the church and lists the amount — $109,454 in cash.

A narrative about the circumstances surrounding the loss was included in the public incident report, which was filed on July 6.

Police spokeswoman Jenny Monroe said a narrative will be released once the detective speaks with the suspect and conducts a proper investigation. Monroe said the EPD report completion guideline is that an officer has five days to complete a report and turn it in for supervisor approval.

In the statement, St. John’s reported that during a recent parish assessment project a possible misappropriation of church funds by a church employee was discovered.

In consultation with the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, an independent accounting firm was retained to conduct a review of certain books and records of the church to ascertain what had actually happened, the church stated.  

“While the CPA firm’s review was limited to certain accounts and records of the Church, it did confirm the misuse of Church funds,” the church stated.

It would be inappropriate for the church to comment further during the pending investigation although the church will cooperate fully with the civil authorities, the statement read.

A June 2012 update on the parish assessment project, a planning mechanism for the parish, is posted on St. John’s website. The assessment was written by two parish life facilitators who have been learning more about staff functions and parish internal workings.

The update compliments the staff for the parish and the school, and states that work is being done to help them be as effective and efficient as possible. Issues they deal with are internal and external communications, effective planning time and handling all activities of the parish and school. They were also dealing with the hiring of a parish business manager.

marks@edmondsun.com | 341-2121, ext. 108

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