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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Ex-Pta Officer Accused Of Theft

Associated Press

A former vice president of a Pasco elementary school’s parent-teacher group has been charged with embezzling at least $8,200 from the group’s checking account.

Marlene Mata, 41, of Pasco, was charged Tuesday with felony theft, accused of stealing money from the bank account of the Mark Twain Elementary PTA between August and December last year.

Franklin County Prosecutor Steve Lowe said Mata stole from the PTA by writing checks to herself and forging the signatures of past and present officers.

The criminal charges follow a civil lawsuit filed against Mata by the PTA three weeks ago.

The civil suit alleges Mata forged 27 checks worth more than $17,500 on the PTA’s bank account. The amounts of the bogus checks range from $10 to $3,100.

Mata resigned as vice president in December.

PTA President Rosa Torres has said the association has fallen about $7,000 into debt because of the alleged forgeries. Most of the group’s money is raised through book fairs and school carnivals.

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