A Montz man will have to reimburse two civic associations after pleading guilty to stealing money from both of them.
Christopher Kennedy, 38, pleaded guilty to two counts of theft valued over $500.
Montz received a deferred sentence of five years, which means that if he successfully completes a five-year probation period, the charge will be dismissed without a conviction being entered.
Kennedy was also ordered to pay restitution of $2,164.32 to the Montz Civic Association and $2,090 to the Country Cottage Homeowners Association. He must perform 100 hours of community service, which will include officiating at youth sports events.
On April 30, 2010 Kennedy was arrested and charged with nine counts of forgery, theft of $300 to $500 and theft under $300 after allegedly forging and cashing several checks out of the Country Cottage organization’s bank account.
On May 14, he was arrested a second time and charged with theft of goods over $500 and five counts of theft of goods under $100 for allegedly forging and cashing checks from the Montz civic organization’s bank account.
Kennedy was arrested after members of each organization became suspicious of his activities and alerted the authorities, according to Capt. Pat Yoes of the St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office.
Of the May arrest, Yoes said that the treasurer of the Montz Civic Association was the one who realized there was a problem after Kennedy was arrested for stealing money from Country Cottage.
“The treasurer was concerned since (Kennedy) was president of the Country Cottage association as well,” Yoes said. “There were a number of checks that were written to (Kennedy) or were written to cash.”
Montz Civic Association secretary/treasurer Michelle Langley said that she became suspicious of Kennedy after asking him about some of the organization’s financial records.
“There were a couple of red flags that came up. One being that he had all the records as far as the check book and bank documents - I was the counter signer on the account but I didn’t even have the account number,” Langley said. “The second flag came up when he made a comment to me at one point…that he didn’t have any receipts…he was just so nonchalant.”
After hearing about what happened at Country Cottage Civic Association, Langley said she decided to investigate.
“Without Chris knowing…I went to the bank and asked to see the activity. I had reason to question the activity,” Langley said. “When they pulled it up I almost died. We had $10 left in our account…we started with about $2,700.”
Langley said that the organization had hardly spent anything since their initial start-up costs.
Lifestyles Editor Michelle Stuckey contributed to this report.