MIDDLESBORO, Ky (WYMT) - UPDATE 7-10-13
A Bell County grand jury will hear the case of a Middlesboro city employee accused of stealing money.
Carrie Gambrell is charged with theft and forgery. She works in the Middlesboro city clerk's office. Police say she wrote checks to herself and forged the mayor and clerk's signature on them.
During a preliminary hearing, her attorney waived the case to the grand jury.
Gambrell is suspended from her job during the investigation.
Police say a Middlesboro City Clerk employee stole taxpayer dollars.
Carrie Gambrell, 30, is charged with 13 counts of forgery and 13 counts of theft.
Mayor Bill Kelley says Carrie Gambrell is suspended without pay.
Police say the investigation started when her brother, Brent Gambrell, was missing money. He and Middlesboro Police determined his sister, Carrie Gambrell, forged his checks to herself and cashed them, totaling $1,315 over a three-month time period.
"It's tough. She's my sister. I was put in a tough spot," Brent Gambrell told us.
Carrie Gambrell works at the Middlesboro City Clerk's office.
During the investigation, Police say City Clerk Sandra Wilson then discovered Gambrell wrote herself checks from two city accounts, forged the mayor and clerk's signature on them, and cashed them.
The arrest citation states between February 28, 2013 and June 17, 2013, Gambrell took one check of $300 from the Fire and Ambulance Fund and five checks from the City General Fund totaling $655.52.
"We are taking it very seriously. It's a big responsibility we have handling taxpayer money and we want to make sure we handle it properly," said Police Chief Jeffrey Sharpe.
Police say Gambrell voluntarily surrendered at the Middlesboro Police Station on Tuesday.
"Carrie has been cooperating with this investigation as well as my family," said Brent Gambrell.
Carrie Gambrell pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Carrie Gambrell turned down our request for a jailhouse interview. Jail officials say she will go on home incarceration next week.
Despite being a victim, Brent Gambrell says he will help his sister.
"This is only going to get worse before it gets better. She needs positive re-enforcement, extreme encouragement," said Brent Gambrell.
Police say they city is doing an in-depth review of all accounts to see if any other money is missing.
A Middlesboro city employee is charged with a combined 26 counts of theft and forgery.
The police citation reports, 30 year old Carrie Gambrell was arrested for forging signatures on checks payable to her over a three month period.
The citation states a Middlesboro city clerk discovered several checks were made out to Gambrell for just under $1,000.
Police say those checks had forged signatures of both the city clerk and the mayor.
Gambrell is at the Bell County Detention Center.