KENNEWICK -- A woman who kept the books for a Kennewick locksmith business owes $80,000 in restitution to her former employer after pocketing cash.
Sandra L. Shipman, 36, was sentenced to six months in jail, which can be done on either work crew or work release. She pleaded guilty in December to first-degree theft with the aggravating factor that it was a major economic offense.
The Richland woman reportedly was going through a divorce when she embezzled the money.
When charges first were filed against Shipman in November, prosecutors alleged she took at least $27,000 from Mount's Lock & Key between January 2009 and August 2010.
Never miss a local story.
Shipman was a bookkeeper at Mount's for about five years. She was fired after the embezzlement was discovered.
The owner discovered $2,590 in cash was missing from money Shipman was supposed to have deposited into the business's bank account, court documents said. She initially denied the theft, documents said.
The business then asked a former bookkeeper to audit the books, which revealed that money frequently was missing from deposits.
When interviewed by police, Shipman admitted to the thefts but said she had not kept track of the exact amounts.
Suspect in drug case enters innocent plea
A 24-year-old man pleaded innocent to charges filed after he was stopped by police and allegedly found with $2,000 cash and drugs in his car, including more than 1 pound of marijuana.
Daniel Trujillo is scheduled for trial May 23 on three counts of possessing marijuana, methamphetamine and cocaine with intent to manufacture or deliver. Each charge is for a separate drug.
Trujillo was stopped Jan. 26 when police discovered he was driving with a suspended license.
After his arrest, officers found he had the cash on him "packed in need bundles according to denomination," court documents said. Both Trujillo and his car allegedly smelled of marijuana.
Police got a warrant to search the vehicle and, in addition to 21 ounces of pot, seized 15 grams of meth, five grams of cocaine, digital scales, packaging materials, drug ledgers and three cell phones, documents said.
Trujillo is in the Benton County jail on $5,000 bail.