Springboro woman pleads guilty to embezzling youth league funds

Michelle Petrey in court on Wednesday
Michelle Petrey in court on Wednesday

WARREN COUNTY, OH (FOX19) - This summer a Warren County youth soccer program noticed discrepancies in the organization's bank account.

What they didn't expect is that more than $60,0000 was missing.

One organization volunteer went before the judge on Wednesday after an investigation uncovered she had used the missing funds to pay electric bills, credit card payments, and herself.

"What is your plea to felony four theft ma'am?" asked Judge Robert Peeler.

"Guilty," quietly said Michelle Petrey.

Petrey,44, plead guilty to embezzling $64,800 from the Clearcreek Youth Soccer Association.

Petrey hurried out of court and declined to comment.

New officers questioned the financial status of the organization and Petrey indicated there were no funds available for use.

"Which was astounding to the incoming board members because they knew the type of fundraising that had gone on," said David Fornshell, Warren County Prosecutor.

To date, Petrey has paid back around $12,000, but the soccer association is still feeling the loss of the stolen funds.

"When you hear a story like this that somebody could even if they had the opportunity, even they were the only ones handling the funds, that they would steal money from children, basically," added Fornshell.

Fornshell said this kind of crime is becoming much more common.

"It's not the only case that we have under investigation," explained Fornshell. "Unfortunately, it's something that we tend to see more and more of I think when the economy is the way that it is."

Petrey is free on bond until sentencing, but could face up to 18 months in prison and thousands of dollars in fines.

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