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PTA mom indicted for $11K theft

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By Jacquelyn Stoess Hack

A Liberty Elementary volunteer is charged with theft of more than $11,000 by forging checks from the school’s Parent Teacher Association.
Melanie Winkle, 39, 2701 N. Ky. 53, La Grange, is charged with theft by unlawful taking and nine counts of forgery.
An Oldham County grand jury handed up her indictment earlier this month after an investigation by Oldham County Police.
According to the indictment, Winkle allegedly forged the PTA president’s signature on nine counter checks from Liberty Elementary’s PTA account during a portion of her term as the treasurer.
It began with a $3,000 check Winkle allegedly forged on June 15, 2010.
Three weeks later, on July 3, 2010, she allegedly forged a $538.75 check, followed by three checks in August 2010, two checks in October 2010, one check in November 2010 and one check in February 2010.
The checks total $11,527.14.
Police launched an investigation after PTA board members found discrepancies in Winkle’s bookkeeping earlier this summer.
Winkle’s attorney, H. Patrick King, said the “accounting irregularities” have since been corrected.
She has pleaded not guilty to nine counts forgery and theft by unlawful taking over $10,000.
During her arraignment, Winkle paid a $5,000 unsecured bond and Judge Karen Conrad ordered her to have no contact with Liberty Elementary or members of the PTA.
King said Winkle’s children have completed elementary school and she is no longer associated with Liberty or the school’s PTA.
Winkle is scheduled to appear in Oldham circuit court for a pretrial conference at 1 p.m. Sept. 1.


Winkle earned the school’s Torch Award for volunteerism during the 2008-09 school year.
Liberty Elementary Principal Jane Smith said Winkle had been a longtime volunteer at the school.

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