Former City of Salisbury worker sentenced for embezzlement

Published: Aug. 7, 2017 at 9:53 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 7, 2017 at 10:43 PM EDT
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SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) - A former customer service representative for the City of Salisbury has been sentenced for embezzling money from customers.

Joe Damion Elliott of Spencer was convicted on Monday in Rowan County Criminal Court of two counts of felony embezzlement, according to a news release from Rowan County District Attorney Brandy Cook.

Judge Anna Mills Wagoner sentenced Elliott to two consecutive 5-15 months in prison, suspended sentence with supervised probation for 36 months.  During probation, Elliott was ordered to abide by the regular conditions of probation, provide a DNA sample, serve 6 days in the Rowan County jail per month for 3 months at the direction of his probation officer, maintain gainful employment, pay court appointed attorney's fees, pay $21,118.35 for restitution, complete community service and pay the fee, be on good general behavior, and not violate any laws of the state.

Elliott was able to provide full restitution to the City of Salisbury in court.

Elliott was hired in August 2013 by the City of Salisbury to serve as a customer service representative.  His duties and responsibilities included collecting payments for city services such as water, garbage, sewer, and Fibrant.  Between January 31, 2014 to December 9, 2014, Elliott unlawfully embezzled $10,218.32 from the City of Salisbury.  During this time, he entered cash voids that were not reapplied to targeted accounts.

Between February 7, 2014 and July 7, 2015, Elliott unlawfully embezzled $10,900.03 from the City of Salisbury.  Elliott entered cash voids and made a courtesy adjustment to the altered account in an effort to masquerade his unlawful taking.

It appeared from the investigation that Elliott targeted delinquent accounts from which to embezzle money.  The NC State Bureau of Investigation conducted the investigation into this matter and determined that Elliott had embezzled $21,118.35.  Elliott admitted to investigators that he only took $1500 from the City.

Rowan County District Attorney Brandy Cook stated that she appreciated the thorough investigation conducted by the NC State Bureau of Investigation and the dedication of Assistant District Attorney Scott Harkey who was able to hold Elliott accountable for his criminal conduct and recoup full restitution for the City of Salisbury.

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