Laurel woman charged in theft of PTO funds

LAUREL – Laurel police arrested a Laurel woman in connection with the theft of money from the Parent-Teacher Organization at North Laurel Elementary School.

Kimberly Parker, 48, was taken into custody Jan. 5 and charged with theft over $1,500, according to Laurel Police Sgt. Adam Coleman.

COPS kimberly Parker

KIMBERLY PARKER

Sgt. Coleman said she took more than $2,500 from the organization.

Laurel Superintendent Shawn Larrimore, in a press release issued Thursday, said the suspect was placed on unpaid leave.

In early January, the Laurel School District was made aware of two incidents involving organizations whose finances are not managed or monitored by the school district.

According to Mr. Larrimore, on Jan. 4, 2016, the Laurel School District discovered the theft of funds from North Laurel Elementary School’s Parent-Teacher Organization.

The school district immediately reported this theft to police, Mr. Larrimore said.

The PTO account is managed and controlled by the PTO, and the funds in the PTO account are not district funds, Mr. Larrimore said.

On Jan. 6, 2016, the Laurel Education Association informed its members that it would be securing an independent audit of the LEA bank account due to concerns over financial irregularities.

“The Laurel School District has no role in managing or monitoring the LEA bank account, and the funds in the LEA bank account are not district funds,” said Mr. Larrimore. “The district has reported the alleged theft of the LEA funds, though no arrest has been made at this time.”

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