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Local

Ex-credit union workers admit to embezzling

FBI: Manager used township funds to cover crimes

MILLEDGEVILLE – Two former employees of Milledgeville Community Credit Union have pleaded guilty to embezzling money in separate cases.

As part of a plea agreement, Kim Kent, 53, the credit union's former manager, pleaded guilty today to embezzling $219,600 from October 2005 to February 2012.

And former credit union teller Kelsey Selman, 37, admitted that she embezzled $100,975 from the credit union, according to the news release.

Each woman faces up to 30 years in prison, although it's doubtful that either will get anywhere near that amount.

Kent's sentencing is set for June 2; Selman's will be May 7.

To conceal her embezzlement, Kent created fictitious loans using names of family members and fictitious certificates of deposit, according to a news release from the U.S. attorney's office in Rockford.

In 2009, she was elected supervisor of the Milledgeville-based Wysox Township. She used money from the township's credit union account to cover her embezzlement, the release said.

Selman, 37, used the credit union's computer system to apply credits to her personal account that did not have a corresponding deposit, the release said. As a result, the credit union's records falsely reflected that Selman's cash drawer increased by an amount to offset the deposit into her account.

Wysox Clerk Laurie Byvick said today that she wasn't aware that the women had pleaded guilty.

"I knew it would happen eventually, but didn't know when," Byvick said in an interview.

Todd Ewers, chairman of the credit union's board, said the two women "totally" repaid the institution.

"This was well thought-out. This wasn't simply taking money," he said, adding that the women's crimes were not connected.

Ewers, who was the supervisory committee chairman when the women committed the crimes, said the credit union was glad "that justice is finally being served."

In March 2012, the Wysox board voted unanimously to accept Kent's immediate resignation. The board then voided all checks issued by Kent.

In a December 2012 interview, Milledgeville Police Chief Jim Haag said he started looking into the problems in the township and credit union in March of that year. He said he identified misuse of funds at both places.

In August 2012, he said, he got a call from an FBI agent who was investigating. At the time, the FBI wouldn't confirm the investigation with Sauk Valley Media.

The credit union, chartered in 1957, had $3.8 million in assets as of late 2012, according to the state. It has about 900 members.

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