A longtime bookkeeper for Morrison Eye Care in Detroit Lakes has been sentenced for embezzling over $60,000 from the family-owned business.
Twyla Kay Bucholz, 52, of Detroit Lakes was sentenced to 60 days in jail with work release. She was also granted a stay of adjudication, which means if she completes her probation successfully, the felony will not go on her record.
According to the complaint filed in Becker County District Court, Bucholz had been the bookkeeper for Morrison for more than 20 years, but she quit in April after a consultant hired by the owners suggested her job description be changed. After her departure, owners realized the bank deposits were noticeably larger.
They reviewed records from 2011 to the present and learned that deposits for the last six years had been short, as Bucholz took increasing amounts of money. In 2011 the deposits were short a total of $910, in 2012 the deposits were short $2,282, in 2013 they were short $7,502, in 2014 they were short $11,102, in 2015 they were short $32,700 and this year by April she had already embezzled $7,905.
Becker County Assistant Attorney Brian McDonald says Bucholz was required to pay back the entire amount taken, plus an additional $20,000 in accounting/staff costs expended by the victim. This sum was paid in full on the date of sentencing.
McDonald says she was placed on probation for 20 years; this would make her over 70 years old for any potential discharge from supervised probation.