Yet Another Tennessee PTO President Indicted for Theft

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Authorities have indicted the former president of the Jasper Elementary Parent Teacher Organization on a theft charge after school system officials found and reported questionable transactions.

This, according to an audit Tennessee Comptrollers released Wednesday, referring to Amber Bailey.

“Investigators determined that Bailey stole at least $5,590 from May 2017 through February 2018. Bailey made purchases, wrote and cashed PTO checks for her personal benefit, and failed to deposit money collected during fundraisers,” according to a Comptrollers’ press release.

“She concealed her misappropriation by failing to turn over, or make available, PTO bank statements and other crucial financial information. This information should have been reviewed by other PTO officers.”

During her tenure as president, Bailey maintained total control of the funds collected during PTO fundraisers and other events.

Bailey used PTO funds to purchase or to reimburse herself for a folding canopy, drill, garment steamer, and folding tables, which she kept, according to the audit.

The Marion County School System recognizes the Jasper Elementary PTO as a school support organization. The PTO’s fundraising efforts provide additional financial support for activities at Jasper Elementary School, auditors wrote.

“Although the organization had multiple officers, the former president assumed responsibility for all financial processes with no oversight,” Comptrollers said.

This month the Marion County Grand Jury indicted Bailey on one count of theft over $2,500, the audit said.

Tennessee Comptroller Justin Wilson said in the press release that PTOs, by state law, must establish procedures for accounting, controlling, and safeguarding funds.

“In this situation, the former president had too much individual control over financial matters, and even had a second person sign PTO checks when they were blank,” Wilson wrote.

Jasper Elementary PTO officers told auditors they have corrected or will correct these deficiencies, Comptrollers wrote.

As The Tennessee Star reported last November, the former president of Cumberland Elementary School’s Parent Teacher Organization in Nashville stole nearly $18,000 from the school.

Last year Davidson County grand jurors indicted that man, LaRon Bridgeforth, on one count of theft over $10,000.

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Jasper Courthouse” by Brian Stansberry. CC BY 3.0.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  1. […] The Tennessee Star reported last year,  authorities indicted the former president of the Jasper Elementary Parent Teacher Organization […]

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