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Santa Cruz Valley Union High School District - Theft and Misuse of Public Monies


Our investigation revealed that from February 2005 to February 2006, April Smith, the former student activities secretary, embezzled at least $11,000 and misused an additional $7,899 by taking cash belonging to student organizations. Ms. Smith used at least $11,000 to pay for her personal expenses, including childcare, automobile insurance, and a trip to Disneyland. Ms. Smith also misused an additional $7,899 of public money by failing to deposit student activities cash and checks into the District’s bank account. Instead, she improperly kept those receipts in her desk drawer, including some checks that were kept there for almost a year. Further, she attempted to conceal her criminal actions by producing false financial reports of the student activities finances.

We submitted our findings to the Pinal County Attorney’s Office, and on September 13, 2007, the Pinal County Grand Jury took criminal action against Ms. Smith. This action resulted in the indictment of Ms. Smith on a total of 11 counts related to theft, fraudulent schemes, misuse of public money, and tampering with a public record.