Credit Union Teller Embezzles $7-million

LOUISVILLLE, KY -- A Louisville area woman managed to embezzle millions of dollars, at an average monthly rate of over $150,000 until caught, exposing a major flaw in procedures at an area credit union.

For almost four years, Patricia Helen Sherman hid stacks of $100 bills in her pockets and carried them out of the Obelisk Federal Credit Union in New Albany, Ind., where she worked as head teller, federal investigators told the Louisville Courier-Journal.

Sherman, 50, of Louisville, eventually took $7 million -- an average of $152,454 a month -- and gambled most of it away at Ohio River casinos, authorities said when they charged her with embezzlement in U.S. District Court last fall, reports the C-J.

Sherman could get her hands on the money because she had oversight of cash in the vault as well as the credit union's ledger that tracks the cash, according to documents filed with the case.

Sherman now claims the money is entirely gone, authorities say. She faces up to 30 years in prison and is expected to enter a guilty plea in the next three weeks, the newspaper reports.

The staggering scale of the theft -- estimated by the FBI to be one of the largest embezzlements against a U.S. financial institution by an employee -- stunned co-workers and employees at General Mills, the former Pillsbury plant on Grant Line Road where the credit union is based.

Customers of Sherman recalled her as a sincere person who was good with people, reports the newspaper.

"The first thing I thought was: How do you take that kind of money and nobody notices?" said Barbara Anderson, executive director of the Haven House homeless shelter who first met Sherman when she worked at a Jeffersonville credit union.

"We used to tease and cut up and laugh all time," Anderson said. "Nicest person you'd ever want to know."

Roger Miller, union president at General Mills, told the Louisville Courier-Journal that Sherman was like all the employees he encountered at Obelisk -- "friendly and real professional."

Copyright: The Louisville Courier-Journal
www.courier-journal.com


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  • by Ky and Proud Location: Ky on Feb 27, 2008 at 05:58 AM
    Chris...if you are born and bred Ky...(edited). LOL.Why would you want to put Ky down anyway? I love living here. The way I see it if a person don't like what this state has to offer....Go away! FAR FAR AWAY.Gambling has nothing to do with this story. As Cindy from Somerset commented...morals.Most of the people who are morally against the casinos will have some benefit from them. Whether it is money for schools, roads, ect.or if they are a frequent patron of the casinos. Most of the ones against them will probably sneak to them once a month. Then go to church and act better than thou.It makes me sick to see two faced people.As for the comment from JV below, it is a persons personal business what they do with their own money. If I make 300.00 a week and want to buy 250.00 worth of lottery tickets from your place of work....Job security for you! To each their own. We all answer for ourselves in the end.Not for each others actions.
  • by BLACKSHEEP Location: KENTUCKY FAN on Feb 27, 2008 at 04:54 AM
    I HAVE SAID IT FOR YEARS,"THEY OUGHT TO GIVE LOUISVILLE TO INDIANA THE LAND OF THE (edited)". CASE IN POINT, SHE STOLE $7 MILLION DOLLARS FROM THE BANK, I OVERDRAFT MY CHECKING ACCT. BY $3.00 AND I'M CONSIDERED A FELON. FOR THE NEXT ELECTION LETS GIVE LOUISIVILLE TO INDIANA.
  • by Cindy Location: Somerset on Feb 27, 2008 at 03:57 AM
    I dont really understand why this has to do with gambling. She STOLE the money. Would it have been better if she spent it on shoes? Then you morons with your moral high ground could be protesting against shoes in Kentucky. You could make a point as to why we should remain barefoot.
  • by JOE Q Location: KY on Feb 26, 2008 at 08:50 AM
    SEE HOW MUCH WE MISSED OUT! THE MONEY WENT TO INDY. THAT MONEY WOULD HAVE SENT MY KIDS TO SCHOOL. WHERE ARE THE CASINOS WHEN YOU NEED ONE!
  • by JV on Feb 26, 2008 at 07:20 AM
    I worked in a gas station for 5 years from 2002 to 2007. It is astounding what people spend on Lottery tickets alone. We had people who would spend THOUSANDS a week. Many people would gamble money away left and right without their spouses even knowing it, and these people tended to be the worst. There were also people that I know had to be stealing to support their habit. Being a degenerate gambler is just as bad as being a crack addict IMO. It was literally sickening to watch people blow in a couple of hours what I would make in a month. Casinos are the last thing that this state needs.
  • by Chris Location: Avon on Feb 26, 2008 at 06:49 AM
    "Ky and Proud", I am born & bred Kentuckian, so I can comment on Kentucky with very much accuracey. What the matter, did my comments hit a little too close to home for YOU! lol, Get a life, you loser.
  • by Detective on Feb 26, 2008 at 04:33 AM
    You would think after the third million dollar missing someone would have noticed!?
  • by Anymouse Location: Ky on Feb 25, 2008 at 04:25 PM
    You can take a check to the Bank to get it cashed and if they dont know you they will act like you have asked them for their (edited)!!! But the workers can walk out with stacks of cash.
  • by JHR Location: Lexington on Feb 25, 2008 at 04:16 PM
    To Chris from Avon- Don't insult mentally challenged people like that! They would have enough sense and honor not to do something this stupid!
  • by Mom Location: KY on Feb 25, 2008 at 03:24 PM
    Fred, what a riot- LOL
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