AP NEWS

Woman convicted of school embezzlement elected to board

November 29, 2018

TWIN BUTTES, N.D. (AP) — A woman convicted of embezzling from a school district on the Fort Berthold Reservation has been elected to its school board.

Melissa Starr received 35 write-in votes to win a seat on the Twin Buttes board in a special election Tuesday. Starr pleaded guilty in 2007 to embezzlement and theft and was sentenced to 1½ years in prison. The Bismarck Tribune says she was one of seven Twin Buttes School Board members and district employees indicted on charges of conspiring to defraud the school district of more than $665,000.

The fraud involved false travel vouchers, payroll advances and bonuses. Records from the U.S. Attorney’s Office show Starr has paid about $20,500 toward restitution and still owes approximately $288,000.

Starr said Wednesday that parents encouraged her to run.

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Information from: Bismarck Tribune, http://www.bismarcktribune.com

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