A Harrison woman is facing up to five years in prison and a possible fine of up to $40,000 if she is convicted of embezzling funds from the Harrison Band Boosters.
The Harrison Band Boosters is a non-profit organization, separate from the schools, that raises funds for uniforms, music, field trips and equipment for the school bands.
Carolyn Lee Woodry, 52, who was a member of the Boosters, was interviewed and arrested April 19 after another member of the organization received a bank statement that showed missing funds from the Middle and High School bands’ accounts.
The missing funds were reported to the Harrison School Liaison Officer and subsequently turned over to the Clare County Sheriff’s Department’s Detective Division. Detective Sgt. Mike Coon handled the investigation.
Woodry was arraigned in 80th District Court April 20 on one count of embezzlement from a charitable organization of more than $1,000 and less than $20,000.
Sheriff John Wilson said he believes that about $14 to $15,000 was missing from the Boosters’ funds.
The Prosecutor’s office said the funds were allegedly taken between September, 2011 and last Friday, April 20th.
“We are victims here too,” Wilson said. “Our family has supported many fund raisers for the bands and we just paid for a uniform for our sixth grade band student. That money is gone.”
According to a release from the Sheriff’s Department, “At this time, all uniforms, field trips and other activities for the band members have been placed on hold, because the money previously raised for these things was the money taken.”
The felony embezzlement charge is punishable by up to five years imprisonment and/or up to a $10,000 fine or three times the amount embezzled, whichever is greater.
Bond was set at $50,000 cash/surety according to Prosecutor Michelle Ambrozaitis’s office.
Corrections at the Sheriff’s Department reported that Woodry was released on bond April 20.
A preliminary examination has been set for April 30.