CLEVELAND, Ohio — A grand jury has indicted the former secretary of Maple Heights High School on felony charges that accuse her of embezzling more than $40,000 while she worked at the school.
Karla Hopkins, 49, was charged with a single count of theft in office, a third-degree felony.
Hopkins is accused of siphoning the money between July 2017 and June 2018 from programs including the class of 2018’s dues and yearbook fees, auto tech, student council, flag-drill teams and book and ID badge fines, according to prosecutors.
Hopkins was responsible for collecting dues, revenues and fees directly from teachers who were in charge of various programs in the school, and then taking the money to the district’s main office, where it would be deposited into the district’s main account, prosecutors said.
The district’s treasurer in May 2018 called police after discovering money was missing from that year’s senior class funds. Maple Heights police, the district and the State Auditor’s office identified Hopkins as the culprit, according to prosecutors.
The school board fired Hopkins at a special meeting on July 2, 2018, according to an agenda of the meeting posted on the district’s website.
“This individual stole from the students she was employed to assist,” Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O’Malley said in a news release. “These disgraceful actions require that she be schooled in the criminal justice system.”