JEANNETTE (KDKA) — The former president of a Jeannette City School District parents’ association is facing theft charges, accused of failing to turn over thousands of dollars in funds to the group.
According to the criminal complaint, Karen Welshons is accused of stealing more than $6,300 from Jeannette’s Band Parents Association.READ MORE: North Park Pool Closed After Experiencing Power Issues
Investigators say the association’s treasurer was the first to notice the discrepancies in January of last year while reconciling the books.
She approached the director of the Jeannette High School band, who advised her to do a “thorough audit of the association books to figure out what was missing.”
Police say the treasurer told them she discovered “the defendant had not been turning in money for various fundraisers that she either participated in or coordinated.”
When confronted by the band director and treasurer, the criminal complaint says Welshons “did not dispute the amount owned,” “begged them not to report it,” and told them she was “gonna make it right.”
Officials say she did make payments in 2018 and in 2019, but did not meet the deadline to pay it all back.READ MORE: Western Pa. Region Upgraded To Slight Risk Of Severe Weather
Police say Welshons told them she was dealing with some personal issues during the alleged thefts.
Welshons is charged with theft by unlawful taking, and theft by failure to make required disposition of funds received.
Police say she still owns the association more than $2,400.
The Jeannette City School District Superintendent Matthew Jones requested an investigation from the Westmoreland County District’s Attorney’s Office in February.
The superintendent released the following statement:MORE NEWS: Alabama To Make Stop In Pittsburgh As Part Of 50th Anniversary Tour
“The School District has become aware of certain allegations made against a Board Member in relation to financial irregularities affecting a parent organization. The District understands that these allegations are being investigated by the Westmoreland County District Attorney’s office, through the County Detectives Bureau. Since this is an ongoing investigation, the District has no comment at this time. The District expects to be able to comment further once the investigation is completed.”