County bookkeeper charged with embezzling |

County bookkeeper charged with embezzling

Robin McMillan

A Garfield County Clerk and Recorder's Office bookkeeper accused of embezzlement told police "she took the money because it was easy," her arrest affidavit reports.

Robin McMillan, 51, of Rifle, is accused of stealing at least $194,000 from her former employer. According to the Glenwood Springs police affidavit, the crime was uncovered when another bookkeeper brought up a discrepancy in a balance sheet.

An internal investigation turned up similar inconsistencies in daily records for McMillan's days on duty dating back to 2009. The volume of theft appears to have increased since then, with the office estimating more than $135,961 missing in 2013 and $58,642 in 2014. The loss from previous years is still being calculated.

Garfield County Clerk Jean Alberico filed a report with the Glenwood Springs police Aug. 1, and a detective was present when Alberico confronted McMillan on Tuesday morning. McMillan reportedly told Alberico that "it happened a few times" and was then fired. She agreed to accompany the officer to the police department, where she waived her Miranda rights and agreed to an interview.

McMillan admitted to falsifying numbers but told police her husband was unaware of the crime, according to the affidavit. She estimated her total theft at closer to $50,000, which she spent as cash for "daily expenses and medical bills." She also reportedly asked if she could pay the money back and not be charged.

She was arrested for felony theft and released on $10,000 bond.

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A news release from Alberico's office reports that she is "working with the Garfield County Finance Department to hire an auditor to thoroughly assess and identify the risks of fraud within the system, and to ensure internal controls are in place to prevent and detect future fraud."

The county carries employee dishonesty insurance and intends to file a claim on the incident.

This isn't the first time the clerk's office has been the victim of embezzlement. In 2012, employee Brenda Caywood pleaded guilty to taking nearly $16,000 from vehicle-related transactions.

The current case represents a much larger sum and stunned McMillan's coworkers, the news release indicated.

"Alberico said she is very saddened by the theft and that it is a devastating occurrence to her staff," it read.

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