Trial set for Connell woman accused of embezzlement

By The Tri-City HeraldJuly 8, 2014 

A Sept. 3 trial date has been set for a Connell businesswoman charged with embezzling at least $28,000 from a Mesa farm and a public cemetery district.

Monica Lou Pruett, 61, pleaded innocent Tuesday in Franklin County Superior Court to two new counts of first-degree theft.

Prosecutors allege that she took at least $7,000 from farmer Robert C. Schuh by altering the amounts on checks written to Lierman Business Services.

Pruett was the business manager for Franklin County Cemetery District No. 2 when she misappropriated $21,135 during an 81/2 year-period, according to court documents and a state audit report. She was supposed to deposit money from plot sales and gravesite closing fees into the district's account.

A former Connell city councilwoman, Pruett already is serving a two-year sentence for stealing $160,142 from Bill Swensen's Mesa farm through her bookkeeping services.

Bail was set Tuesday at $5,000 so Pruett remains in the Franklin County jail, instead of being returned to a state prison.

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