Kimberly A. Crabtree, who was indicted by a Fayette County Grand Jury in March for embezzlement, pleaded guilty on Tuesday. The former Fayette County Memorial Hospital employee was charged with third degree felonies of theft in office, tampering with records, and tampering with evidence.
According to the Fayette County Prosecutor Jess Weade, Crabtree wrote herself several checks while making them seem to be going to hospital vendors when she was employed as a staff accountant at the hospital. She avoided company safeguard procedures by only writing checks under $10,000 and later altering accounting records to cover up the embezzlement.
The hospital contacted the Fayette County Sherriff’s office on January 15, 2013 to report and internal theft. They told investigators that Crabtree had issued several checks to herself without authorization between April 2009 and January 2013. According to reports, Crabtree wrote four checks totaling nearly $20,000. Crabtree admitted to writing one of the checks and was fired by the hospital according to police.
The Fayette County Sherriff’s department called in a special investigator from the Ohio Attorney General’s office to aid in this investigation.
Kimberly Crabtree faced a maximum sentence of 72 months in prison and a $20,000 fine. The state and defense jointly recommended a sentence of 18 months, with the state agreeing not to object to an early judicial release. She will be sentenced on July 1, 2013 following a pre-sentence investigation and a sentencing recommendation by the courts probation department. It is also anticipated that she will likely owe more than $19,000 in restitution to Fayette County Memorial Hospital.
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