MIAMI COUNTY — Clay Township Trustee Khristie Worl was arrested this week after investigators say she allegedly put township funds into her own personal account.
Worl is currently facing five separate counts related to the investigation, including a Level 5 felony charge of corrupt business, two Level 6 felony charges of theft, a Level 6 felony charge of fraud and a Level 6 felony charge of official misconduct, according to court documents.
Her preliminary charges stem from an investigation that began by the Indiana State Board of Accounts last month, indicating that Worl had “written checks from the trustee account to herself without an explanation on the checks,” per a probable cause affidavit filed in the case, indicating a total liability from Jan. 1, 2019 to Dec. 31, 2022 of $41,800.
Early in the investigation, a State Board of Accounts field examiner provided investigators a spread sheet of all Clay Township financial transactions for the years 2019-2021, which showed that Worl — who reportedly made $3,600 per year — overcompensated herself by $600 in both 2019 and 2021, per court documents.
On Feb. 23, a search warrant was then requested and granted for all of Worl’s township financial records and accounts through Jan. 1, 2019 to Feb. 23, 2023, according to the affidavit.
That documentation was officially provided on March 9, per court documents, and they reportedly revealed that Worl allegedly wrote 14 checks from the Clay Township trustee’s checking account in 2021, payable to Worl herself, totaling $14,200.
These checks were reportedly endorsed with Worl’s signature, and 12 of those checks were allegedly deposited into Worl’s personal checking account, court documents indicated.
Investigators in the affidavit noted that that was well above Worl’s reported salary.
Authorities also indicated that in 2022, Worl allegedly wrote 21 checks from the trustee’s checking account, again payable to Worl, for the amount of $30,000, court records noted.
As was the case in 2021, Worl reportedly endorsed the checks with her signature, and they were allegedly deposited into Worl’s personal checking account, according to court documents.
During the investigation, authorities interviewed a Clay Township board member knowledgeable of the township’s funds, and that person reportedly told investigators that the board questioned Worl concerning some of the expenditures, per the affidavit.
However, no one ever reportedly observed the checks personally written to Worl, court documents noted.
As part of the investigation, Worl sat down for an interview with police at the Miami County Sheriff’s Office.
During that interview, Worl reportedly admitted to depositing Clay Township funds into her own personal account, according to the affidavit, stating that she was “having financial hardships and intended to reimburse the township when she was able to obtain a personal loan.”
Worl was appointed Clay Township Trustee in January 2019, and she was elected to a second term last year.
Worl was booked into the Miami County Jail on Thursday, and she has since bonded out on $3,000 cash.
Her initial hearing is still pending.
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