Attorney General Wants Former Deputy Clerk-Treasurer To Repay $274K
By Mike Perleberg
(Lawrenceburg, Ind.) – The Indiana Attorney General is demanding that a former City of Lawrenceburg employee repay more than $250,000 to the city.
On Friday, state Attorney General Curtis Hill filed a complaint against former deputy clerk-treasurer Theresa Bruening seeking a repayment of $274,782.60.
Bruening pleaded guilty to federal wire fraud charges in 2014 for issuing herself extra payroll checks. A state audit released last December revealed that Bruening paid herself more than $39,000 extra in 2012 and 2013.
“Each of the 35 checks were processed through the city’s depository account and made payable to other city employees only to eventually be voided, creating the appearance that no check was written when they were, in fact, made payable to Bruening,” a news release from the Indiana Attorney General’s office stated.
The audit also found that Bruening’s failure to submit various payroll reports on time, accurately submit payroll reports on time and remit payroll withholdings on time resulted in $138,737 in liquidated damages to the pension fund. The city also took on $72,742.49 in penalties and interest between 2009 and 2013.
The stolen money, penalties and interest to be repaid amount to $252,131.35. Add on the costs stemming from the State Board of Accounts audit and the total amount of repayment sought by the Attorney General reaches $274,782.60.