Bill Krickbaum, who owns Lyons Construction, told Rogersville police on June 26 that he believed his secretary, Shona Michelle Michael, 35, of 121 Rush Road, Bulls Gap, had taken about $38,000 from a company bank account.
On June 27, police interviewed Michael, who allegedly admitted to writing out company checks in her name, although she reportedly told police she didn’t know how much she’d taken or when she started writing the checks.
Krickbaum had explained to police that Michael was a secretary with the company, and among her duties was processing the company payroll.
Over the past month, police and accountants have pored over the company records to determine exactly how much money Michael had allegedly took. Krickbaum had also reportedly loaned some money to Michael, and that was excluded from the final figure alleged to have been stolen.
In all, investigators determined last week that Michael had allegedly embezzled $47,903.86 via 101 forged payroll checks beginning in January 2006.
“We haven’t determined why she did it or what she used the money for, but we’re pretty sure that it’s pretty much gone,” Detective Jim Shanks said. “I don’t think much, if any, of the money will be recovered.”
On Friday the Rogersville Police Department formally charged Michael with theft over $10,000, a Class B felony punishable by up to 12 years in prison. Michael spent the weekend in the Hawkins County Jail without bond and was arraigned Monday in Hawkins County Sessions Court, where her bond was set at $10,000.
She was released on bond Monday afternoon.