Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Mirror, Mirror: Municipal Court

If you've been to one municipal court, you've pretty well been to all. The number of available seats may vary, and the judge's dais may rise to greater heights in some courts, but one thing is extremely consistent--they all take in a lot of money.

Problems with the court system are also very similar. Wherever there's a lot of cash, there's always the temptation to pocket some of the court's proceeds. It was just in 2010 that a Muscle Shoals city magistrate was convicted of pilfering over 86K in city funds. She served a five year prison sentence (with good time) and is now a free woman...or almost free; she still has to work to pay back her ill-gotten gains.

Earlier this year, LaDonna Hitt Montgomery pleaded guilty to embezzling more than 65K from the Russellville Municipal Court. Hitt agreed to pay back the stolen funds and is currently on probation for her crimes.

The crimes of both municipal court employees were revealed by a routine audit. We don't usually look at accountants as crime busters, but perhaps we should. After all, one sent Al Capone up the river...


Our friends at Pen N Sword have an interesting article: Shake Up in Rogersville. It seems there should be a follow up, don't you think?


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