GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WFLA) – A former Gainesville city employee stole nearly $100,000 from the city to pay for cosmetic surgery and other purchases, The Gainesville Sun reports.
Natwaina Clark, 33, was arrested on March 28. An auditor’s report later revealed she stole $93,000 from the city, $8,500 of which went towards a Brazilian butt lift procedure. She also spent thousands on food, a television and her cable television bill.
The purchases were finally called into question when the department noticed they had spent over budget.
The report found Clark had funneled roughly $41,000 to her personal PayPal account, which was linked to her bank account. To get the city off her tracks, she would itemize these transactions as “decor,” “storage bins,” and “holiday banners.” Detective say she charged her city-issued credit card 136 times, spending roughly $61,000 in unauthorized charges. She used her bosses’ credit cards 36 times, spending an additional $31,000. She then charged $900 on a coworker’s card five times. The purchases were made between November 2015 and March 2017. Clark was hired in August 2015. She earned an annual salary of $33,500, and reportedly told coworkers she had a boyfriend who “bought her things.”
The report found the city’s parks, recreation and cultural affairs department (PRCA) negligent in allowing Clark to make these purchases by failing to review their expense reports for more than a year. The auditor also blamed the city’s human resources department for failing to properly execute her background screening. Clark had previously been arrested for stealing employees banking and personal information at another job, and selling that data to a third party. The HR department did not notify others of her arrest history when she was hired by the city.
According to The Gainesville Sun, Clark is described as an intelligent worker who was eager to help. Her employers said she could have easily been promoted had she not stolen the city’s money.
Clark now faces charges for larceny and scheme to defraud, both felonies.
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