Oakland city worker accused of ripping off city - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Nick Kenney

Oakland city worker accused of ripping off city

Not long ago, five full-time employees ran Oakland's City Hall. Now just four do the job. That's because the fifth is in jail, accused of ripping off the city.

"I do feel betrayed because you know, I, we liked her. I trusted her," Oakland mayor Bill Mullins said.
Julie Cole is charged with official misconduct and theft of property between 10-thousand and 60-thousand dollars.

According to Oakland Mayor Bill Mullins,Cole worked at city hall for less than a year. Still, he says, she managed to steal nearly 45-thousand dollars.

"She was taking invoices off of people that we use seldomly and writing checks to them and taking them to the banks and cashing them," Mullins said.

Julie Cole's husband Thomas Cole said his wife is innocent. He pointed to a 4-page letter of complaint she's written against the town of Oakland.

Cole says she was fired for no reason. She said that the town destroyed evidence that could prove her innocence and the town recorder is to blame for any missing money. She calls the town recorder "unqualified and incompetent and through her reckless disregard and through the dereliction of her duties that the public trust has been violated."

Oakland Mayor Bill Mullins says that isn't the case.

"She's trying to throw this off on someone else to pull attention away from her, but she is guilty," Mullins said.

Julie Cole is scheduled to appear in court first thing Thursday morning. She's being held on 200-thousand dollars bond.

Click here to e-mail Nick Kenney.

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