La Grange City Hall employee accused of stealing $1,000

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By Amanda Manning

 A La Grange City Hall employee was terminated for allegedly stealing $1,000 of a tax payment from Jumbo Buffet.

Faith Brush, a former assistant to the mayor of La Grange, was summoned to court March 29 on the charges of theft, official misconduct and unlawful access to a computer.

According to court documents by La Grange Police, Jumbo Buffet made a $2,381.40 property tax payment to the City of La Grange last year.

 On Oct. 17, 2017, Brush allegedly took $1,000 of that payment in city hall.   

“Defendant entered the full amount of the tax payment in the City’s computer system in an attempt to hide her theft of the money,” according to the criminal complaint. 

 Jumbo Buffet, a La Grange Chinese restaurant, was under federal investigation in January. Authorities have yet to say why or if the investigation is complete.

La Grange Mayor Joe Davenport did not have any comment.

Mayor candidate and current councilwoman Shannon Pottie Whitaker commented on the charges.

“City Hall has no internal controls,” she said. “I’ve always questioned the funds and have always questioned why things don’t balance and why we have so many misappropriations. I never get a straight or confident answer.”

Brush’s attorney, Don Williams, told the Era he expects Brush to be cleared of the charges. 

“I anticipate from the evidence that I’ve seen that she will be acquitted,” he said.

Williams also said Brush has been in front of an employment commission who found that she did not commit any misconduct. 

Brush is scheduled to appear in Oldham County District Court on April 11, after the time of press.

During the February La Grange City Council meeting, councilors went into executive session about the appointment, discipline or dismissal of an employee. Once they came out of the hour-long executive session, nothing was said except a motion to adjourn.  

The Era later learned that two employees were no longer employed with city hall.

Davenport previously told the Era that both Brush and employee Nancy Griffin resigned.

 The City Clerk of La Grange has since told the Era that Griffin resigned on her own terms. “She resigned because she didn’t want to do the transportation supervisor job that she was hired for,” La Grange City Clerk Stephanie Cooper said.

The two made over $70,000 combined, according to the city’s annual budget.

The La Grange City Council met on April 9 and went into executive session about the appointment, discipline or dismissal of an employee for the third consecutive month. 

Nothing was discussed once they came out of the executive session. 

This story has been updated.