Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

October 23, 2012

State demands Bunker Hill officials pay back $37,000

Former judge, clerk have 21 days to pay before state can file lawsuit.

BUNKER HILL — The Indiana Attorney General Office issued letters last week demanding the former Bunker Hill judge and clerk pay back $37,000 to the town after the two officials failed to deposit that amount in traffic violations in 2011.

A state audit released earlier this month said former Town Judge Melvin Smith and former Court Clerk Kimberly Zehring were responsible for processing and depositing traffic ticket money into the bank.

On 121 days, the two officials deposited less money than was shown on court accounting books from February through December.

Both have denied stealing the missing $37,000, and Miami County Prosecutor Bruce Embrey said there isn’t enough evidence to establish criminal charges.

Bryan Corbin, public information officer with the Attorney General Office, said Zehring and Smith now have 21 days to either pay the money back or contact the office to set up a payment plan.

If they don’t, he said the state will file a lawsuit against the two and potentially place liens on any property they own or freeze their financial assets.

Smith, however, has denied any responsibility for the missing money. In a letter to the state, he said he never received training in the court’s accounting software, and never personally entered any financial data into the system.

“I don’t feel that I should be held partially responsible for the missing funds since I did everything I could in full faith to maintain the integrity of the court as I had the previous seven years,” he wrote. “If I’m guilty of anything, it is being too trusting of what I considered a good, honest employee [Zehring].”

Both Zehring and Smith filed $5,000 in insurance bonds in 2011 in case of theft. Corbin said the state will take that money and require them to pay the leftover amount.

Judge Smith served for seven years, but didn’t run for reelection in 2011. His term ended in December. Zehring stopped working as court clerk in February of this year, according to the audit.

Carson Gerber is a Kokomo Tribune reporter. He can be reached by phone at 765-854-6739 or by email at carson.gerber@kokomotribune.com

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Bona Vista to build new $1.23 million housing development Bona Vista Programs has announced plans to build a new $1.23 million housing development in downtown Kokomo to accommodate people with disabilities.The new 6,500-square-foot housing unit called Elmwood Trails will be located at 1101 N. Buckeye St. an

    July 25, 2014

  • Burlington woman charged in May fatal crash Police arrested a 26-year-old Burlington woman Wednesday who is accused of causing a fatal crash while driving drunk.Howard County sheriff deputies served a warrant on Casie E. Johnson charging her with a B felony causing death while operating a vehi

    July 25, 2014

  • Airshow Practice 05 Eyes to the sky Twenty-four-year-old Kevin Coleman is one of the youngest air show stars in the world.The Louisiana man is a second generation pilot and second generation air show performer. As a kid, he watched as his dad and then his brother flew through the skies

    July 25, 2014 5 Photos

  • Former county official pleads guilty to conversion One of two former county officials charged with theft and official misconduct was sentenced last week to a two-year suspended sentence after pleading guilty to misdemeanor charges. Darrell Reed, 52, pleaded guilty to two Class A misdemeanor conversio

    July 24, 2014

  • NWS - KT072514 Kokomo School Board - pic Blueprints found during demolition aid Central Middle School remodel

    When workers began the tear down for renovations to the Central Middle School auditorium, they stumbled upon something very important and helpful sifting through the century-old material. Tucked away inside the structure were the original blueprints,

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Burlington woman charged in May fatal crash A 26-year-old Burlington woman is being accused of driving drunk causing the death of a Frankfort man in a May 2 accident near the Howard-Tipton county line. Howard County sheriff deputies served a warrant on Casie E. Johnson on Wednesday charging he

    July 24, 2014

  • Lake Co. judge strikes down Indiana right-to-work INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A Lake County judge struck down Indiana's right-to-work ban on certain union fees in a second legal blow to the contentious law passed in 2012. Lake County Circuit Court Judge George Paras determined the law violates the state co

    July 24, 2014

  • Kokomo man charged with sexual misconduct with a minor Kokomo police arrested a 20-year-old man Tuesday afternoon on a warrant charging him with sexual misconduct with a minor involving a 14-year-old girl.Officers arrested Malachi Ely at 4:38 p.m. at his residence in the 500 block of South Goyer Road on

    July 24, 2014

  • Howard County rejected for state preschool pilot Howard County is not among the five counties selected for Indiana’s new preschool voucher pilot.Gov. Mike Pence announced Tuesday that Allen, Jackson, Lake, Marion and Vanderburgh counties will roll out the program in 2015. Eighteen counties, includi

    July 24, 2014

  • Peru dam Who should fix the dams? PERU — Who has jurisdiction over six dams located in the Hidden Hills housing addition just north of Peru, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources or the people who own the land?It’s a question with a lot riding on it — more than $1.5 million, in

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries