©2011 Galesburg Broadcasting Co.
|Knox County Recorder Arrested for Theft From County Democratic Party; Party Chair Says He's "Disappointed."
|UPDATED 6:17pm, 7:41pm 11/11/09 A Knox County elected official is accused of stealing money from her political party.
Galesburg Police reports indicate 48-year old Knox County Recorder Paula Monzo was arrested Wednesday morning on a preliminary felony charge of Theft Over $300.
Knox County Democratic Central Committee Chair Norm Winick told police Tuesday night he was contacted by Wells Fargo Bank about "an abundance of activity" on a bank account described as a low-activity business checking account.
Winick says he later determined he found about $3,500 of unauthorized activity on the account, made by Monzo either payable in checks to herself or to "cash," and that he discovered she had taken an A.T.M. card out on the account without anyone's knowledge.
Winick tells WGIL he's, "disappointed" in the situation, but also pleased in a way.
"I'm also encouraged in how effectively the law enforcement system worked, and how everyone was unified in trying to help me get to the bottom of this," Winick said.
Police reports say Monzo, who was the party's treasurer, admitted to taking money and getting the A.T.M. card, but also initially said she thought the amount she took was closer to $1,500, but could be higher. She reportedly told investigators she was struggling to pay bills and had a cocaine habit.
She did claim she paid about a thousand dollars back.
Monzo, who was just elected as Recorder last November after working for the County Clerk's office, is being held in the Knox County Jail, and is expected to make an initial court appearance as soon as Thursday.
This is not the first time in recent memory a Knox County elected official has been arrested for allegedly stealing money. Republican Marc Wong was arrested in 2003 on theft and forgery charges for allegedly stealing money from the Knox County Republican Party and State Representative Don Moffitt's campaign fund. He later pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 90-days of home confinement and four-years of probation. Wong resigned as Knox County Clerk before pleading guilty, but said at the time doing so had nothing to do with his arrest.
(Paula Monzo. From www.youtube.com.)
|11 12 09 by Newsroom
Click here for the WGIL News Archive
Click here for national news
The following provision applies to all visitors (which shall include persons and representatives of legal entities, whether such representatives are persons or digital engines of a kind that crawls, indexes, scrapes, copies, stores or transmits digital content). By accessing this Web site or digital service, you specifically acknowledge and agree that: (i) Associated Press text, photo, graphic, audio and/or video material shall not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium; (ii) No Associated Press materials nor any portion thereof may be stored in a computer except for personal and non-commercial use; (iii) The Associated Press will not be held liable for any delays, inaccuracies, errors or omissions therefrom or in the transmission or delivery of all or any part thereof or for any damages arising from any of the foregoing; (iv) The Associated Press is an intended third party beneficiary of these terms and conditions and it may exercise all rights and remedies available to it; and (v) The Associated Press reserves the right to audit possible unauthorized commercial use of AP materials or any portion thereof at any time.