Ex-sheriff’s employee charged with embezzlement
January 8, 2014
A former employee of the Carson City Sheriff’s Office has been charged with eight counts of stealing money from the department.
Laura Wissert resigned her position as an account technician after the investigation into the missing cash began in August.
Sheriff Ken Furlong said the case was turned over to the Nevada Division of Investigations to avoid any appearance of a conflict, given that Wissert had worked for the department more than 10 years.
The money that was taken was supposed to go into the bail and seizure/forfeiture accounts, Furlong said. He added that because it was cash, not checks or other forms of payment, the amounts missing weren’t initially noticed. That changed once other staffers in the office checked to see whether there was enough money in the accounts to make an equipment purchase for the District Attorney’s Office.
The complaint filed in Justice Court accuses Wissert of seven counts of taking more than $3,500 in cash that should have been deposited in the bank and one count of stealing between $650 and $3,500. Those seven are Category B felonies punishable by up to 10 years in prison. The Category C count is punishable by up to five years in prison.
Specifically, the complaint charges that she converted the money “with intent to steal it or defraud the owner, owners or employer” — the department.
Furlong said the person in Wissert’s position “is responsible for a lot of cash.” He said he doesn’t know yet how much was taken overall.
“This hit us below the belt,” he said, noting Wissert was a popular employee and one of the two people honored as the department’s “Team of the Year” last year.
The warrant issued to NDI investigators seeks bail of $20,000 for Wissert. She reportedly was making arrangements Tuesday to turn herself in.