SPRINGBORO, OH (FOX19) - A Warren County woman stole nearly $200,000 dollars from a youth baseball team and used part of it for a Disney vacation, Warren County officials say.
Monday, Warren County Prosecutor David P. Fornshell said Renee K. Nichols, 46, was indicted for embezzling funds from the Springboro Clearcreek Baseball Association (SCBA).
Officials say Nichols served as treasure of SCBA from 2011 to 2017.
The prosecutor’s office says from July 2013 through July 2017, Nichols stole at least $180,000 from SCBA’s bank account and used it for personal purchases.
Nichols spent that money on a trip to Disney and credit card bills, among other things, the indictment says.
A new board member, who is a former CPA with experience in fraud investigations, uncovered the scheme in 2017 officials say.
While looking through the organization’s finances, the new member found that Nichols didn’t file SCBA’s Form 990 with the IRS threatening its tax-exempt status.
Nichols doctored bank records to hide the nature of her purchases, officials say.
Investigators believe Nichols also destroyed and disposed of the laptop containing SCBA’s historical financial information.
Board members and Springboro police found about 1,000 improper expenditures throughout the investigation.
“The idea that funds that should have been used for things like replacing aging helmets to prevent concussions, instead were used as someone’s own personal slush fund, it’s infuriating,” said Fornshell.
Nichols is charged with aggravated theft and tampering with records.
Monday, SCBA put out a statement about the indictment, assuring the community all games will be played as scheduled and they are cooperating with law enforcement.
Nichols will appear in court Wednesday afternoon.
Fornshell used the indictment announcement to remind Warren County organizations about a training to learn how to protect themselves against internal theft.
He says the prosecutor’s office along with the Warren County Police Chiefs Association will discuss policies and procedures these organizations can implement during a training session at 7 p.m., Oct. 24, in the Warren County Prosecutor’s Office multipurpose room.