Woman admits she stole thousands of dollars from school's PTA account

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. - The former treasurer of an elementary school PTA admitted she stole thousands of dollars from the group.

Mary Ward, 32, pleaded guilty in Jackson County Court to theft of funds April 15.

Her crimes came to light in late July and early August 2011, when the then-incoming treasurer of the Blue Hills Elementary School PTA found a $22,000 discrepancy in the PTA's account.

A Jackson County Sheriff's department detective combed through the financial records and found several cases of over-reporting by Ward, according to court documents.

Ward was placed on probation for five years and must repay the $22,000, according to a news release from the Jackson County Prosecutor's Office.

She also cannot handle money for civic organizations.

Ward paid $15,000 of her debt Monday and will pay $120 per month until the debt is repaid.

She must also spend 120 days on home detention, perform 100 hours of community service and write a letter of apology to the Blue Hills PTA, according to the news release.

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