Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

March 18, 2013

Derrick Days reports missing money

Police probing embezzlement from account

By Janet Jacobs
Corsicana Daily Sun

Corsicana — Money has allegedly been stolen from the Derrick Days account, according to Corsicana Police Chief Randy Bratton.

“A board member contacted us (Monday) about the bank account being overdrawn. She was contacted by the bank. We started an immediate investigation,” Bratton said. “No arrests have been made. The investigation continues. We’ve got to go through and collect evidence and obtain records.”

Chairman of the committee, Fran Townes, who took over the reins of the festival just last fall, said about $10,000 was in the account. Other board members as listed on the Derrick Days website are Vice-president Christle Reamy, and Secretary Andy Williams. The treasurer’s position for the group is currently vacant, according to the website.

The missing money was intended to be used for advertising, trash collection, entertainment and printing costs, Townes said.

“We’re not canceling, we’ll do it,” she said of the festival. “If I have to take away from somewhere else or find more underwriters, we’re going to do it. We’re just not sure how we’re going to do it.”

City Manager Connie Standridge said that an emergency meeting has been called for noon Tuesday to discuss the next steps.

“The plan of action is to get together a budget of what we need to have the event proceed, and see where we are going from there,” Standridge said.

The city doesn’t have any money budgeted for these kinds of situations, Standridge said.

“I’m just disappointed,” she said. “The members of the committee have worked so hard. I just hate it for them.”

Derrick Days is scheduled for April 27, with several other events taking place the week leading up to that date.

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Janet Jacobs may be reached via email at jjacobs@corsicanadailysun.com. Want to “Soundoff” to this article? Email: soundoff@corsicanadailysun.com