BENNINGTON -- A Hoosick Falls, N.Y., woman accused of embezzling nearly $50,000 from the plumbing and heating company she worked for was in court Monday to answer embezzlement and forgery charges.
Lisa E. Tabor, 36, was released on conditions without bail after pleading not guilty to felony counts of embezzlement, false pretenses or false tokens, and forgery.
According to an affidavit by Vermont State Police, on April 30, Donald Latif, owner of Latif Plumbing and Heating in Shaftsbury, told police he believed that Tabor, who he had hired in January 2013 to do payroll, quarterly taxes, and pay bills, had embezzled what he thought at the time was at least $10,000.
Latif told police his businesses had been having trouble meeting monthly expenses, and that he had stopped paying himself in order to meet payroll, pay bills, and keep from laying off workers.
Before this, he had loaned Tabor $2,000 after she told him she had been denied a vehicle loan. He then sold her one of the company's trucks, but ended up giving it to her because she could not pay. Latif told police had been fine with this because of Tabor's work performance.
Latif said Taber had forged his name on company checks she wrote to herself. He claimed he confronted her about it and she admitted it, then asked him not to go to police. He left the meeting telling her she was fired but was unsure about going to police.
On May 1, police were granted a wire warrant to listen in on a conversation between Latif and Tabor without Tabor knowing. During the conversation, Tabor said she could pay back the money if she took out a second mortgage on her home, but if Latif went to police she would need the money for a lawyer. Tabor would not say how much she took, only that her husband had left her and she feared losing her child.
Police reviewed the businesses financial records and discovered 99 forged or unauthorized checks made by Tabor totaling $37,030. There were 33 unauthorized electronic money transfers as well totaling $11,124. All for a total of $48,155.
According to the affidavit, filed with the court on May 19, the investigation is still ongoing.
Contact Keith Whitcomb Jr. at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @KWhitcombjr.