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Chagrin Falls clerk indicted for embezzling almost $250,000 over two decades

Financial discrepancies were first noticed in November of 2019.
Credit: Ingram Publishing
Photo: Thinkstock

CHAGRIN FALLS, Ohio — Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley today announced that Debbie Bosworth, 53, was indicted by a grand jury for embezzling nearly $250,000 while working for the village of Chagrin Falls as a clerk. 

According to a press release, Bosworth stole more than $238,000 over a period of two decades. 

“Taxpayers expect their money to be handled properly and ethically,” said Prosecutor O’Malley. “Ms. Bosworth exploited her position as a public employee and in the process violated the trust placed in her by the citizens of Chagrin Falls.” 

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Bosworth began working for Chagrin Falls in 1997 in the Building and Utilities Department and was one of the people responsible for overseeing payments, contractor registrations, permits, among other accounting duties. 

Officials first noticed a discrepancy in the ledgers of the Building and Water Departments in November of 2019. The irregularities were reported to the Chagrin Falls Police Department (CFPD), and after an investigation, it was revealed that Bosworth stole cash from the Water Department and attempted to replace the funds with checks deposited into the department's bank account. Bosworth also submitted falsified reports in an attempt to cover the theft. 

In December of 2019, Bosworth was also found to have attempted to alter records, in a further attempt to hide the embezzlement. The 53-year-old was indicted on two counts of Theft In Office, thirteen counts of Tampering with Records and seven counts of Money Laundering. 

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Chagrin Falls Mayor Bill Tomko released the following statement:

"I want to assure everyone that their individual water and sewer bills and accounts were not adversely affected in any way by these thefts. The Village is insured for losses of this nature.

"The Village will be making no further comment on this matter until it has been legally resolved."