On Friday, former municipal court clerk Rhonda Bateman pleaded guilty to stealing money from
Last summer, the city discovered more than one million dollars was missing.
The prosecutor's office says it will recommend Bateman be sentenced to 10 years in prison and no probation. If the judge grants probation, the prosecutor will ask that Bateman pay restitution of nearly half a million dollars.
The city issued a statement following Bateman’s plea stating that it’s satisfied with the outcome. The city also says since the discovery of the missing funds, the Municipal Court has taken a number of steps to correct potential vulnerabilities in its money-handling to ensure that this circumstance couldn’t be repeated.
Those steps include adding an additional camera to monitor the vault. Two employees are required to be present when the vault is opened and when cash payments are reconciled each day to prepare the bank deposit. The computer system now generates a nightly report on cash trays not uploaded to the City’s financial system; those reports are reviewed by the Chief Judge and the Director of Finance. The Finance Department receives a daily file of all transactions by cashier and type (cash, check, credit card) that is compared to the bank deposit.