Judge Resets Trial Date For Mills Clerk Accused of Embezzlement
A judge rescheduled the embezzlement trial to early next year of the former clerk and treasurer of the Town of Mills during a hearing Thursday.
The four-day trial of Lisa Whetstone, accused of embezzling more than $64,000, will begin Feb. 13, Natrona County District Court Judge Daniel Forgey said.
Whetstone has been charged with one count of grand theft, and one count of failing as a public servant to account for, deliver and pay over property received by virtue of the office.
Her trial was set to being Aug. 29.
But Whetstone's attorney Keith Nachbar recently hired a Colorado expert who must sift through a large amount of documents, and that would not be completed in time, he said. Nachbar asked for the new date. Natrona County District Attorney Mike Blonigen agreed with the request because the prosecution's witness has a lot of evidence to review, too.
Whetstone also agreed to waive her right to a speedy trial.
Investigators with the Wyoming Department of Criminal Investigation say the case started in January 2015, when the Wyoming Department of Audit began a performance audit of Mills from July 2013 to June 2014.
Whetstone was among three employees in charge of handling the town’s finances, with one of those employees leaving during fiscal year.
Auditors could not find cash received by the town that was to be deposited into its bank account. They expanded their investigation and found a total loss to the Town of Mills is $64,383.51.
Whetstone is the only suspect.
The Town of Mills was liable for all charges and there was no personal liability.
Whetstone is free on $5,000 bond awaiting trial and could face up to 10 years in prison on the grand theft charge, and up to five years in prison on the failure as a public servant charge if convicted.