DA: Money embezzled by East Texas woman repaid to Longview ISD E - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

DA: Money embezzled by East Texas woman repaid to Longview ISD Education Foundation

Patricia Benton Hesler mugshot. (Source: Gregg Co. Sheriff) Patricia Benton Hesler mugshot. (Source: Gregg Co. Sheriff)
LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - A Henderson woman is in jail after embezzling more than $200,000 from the Longview ISD Education Foundation during a four-year period.

Under terms of a plea deal reached in March, Patricia Benton Hesler, 61, is serving one year in state jail after pleading guilty to forgery and theft. She began serving her sentence on April 1.

Judge Alfonso Charles also ordered Hesler to pay $70,373.35 in restitution to the Longview ISD foundation, about $130,000 less than the amount Hesler pled guilty to stealing, according to court documents. All parties reportedly agreed to that amount.

The Longview ISD Education Foundation is a non-profit organization created in 1994 to fund grants for teachers, counselors, librarians and nurses within that district. In 2012, the foundation reported to the IRS a total revenue of $60,540, with $76,060 paid out in grants.

In a statement released this morning by the Gregg County District Attorneys Office, Stacey Brownlee said, “over $250,000 was recovered and repaid to the LISD Foundation prior to the plea, an additional $10,000 was paid the day of the plea, with the remainder (the only amount reported in KLTV’s story) to be repaid as a condition of probation once she (Patricia Hesler) is released from prison.”

The theft began in Aug. 28, 2008 and continued for more than four years, according to the indictment. Records also show Hesler was employed as an administrative assistant at the accounting firm of Frank Taggart & Co. in Longview at that time. That firm handles financial matters for the foundation, according to income tax filings.

The forgery indictment states that Hesler made it appear as if her supervisor at the accounting firm, Diane Gibson, wrote at least one check on the account of the Longview ISD Education Foundation. Gibson signed the foundation’s tax returns as the preparer.

The indictment for theft states more than $200,000 was unlawfully acquired from K. Ray, the executive director of the Longview ISD Education Foundation.

Hesler was arrested in April 2013 by deputies with the Gregg County Sheriff’s Office, according to arrest reports.

In an employment biography posted online, Hesler said she “is passionate about charitable organizations such as Longview Independent School District and GoodWill Industries.”

Hesler was also sentenced to 10 years probation and 480 hours of community service.

Copyright 2014 KLTV. All rights reserved.



  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Guns for teachers debate escalates

    Guns for teachers debate escalates

    Friday, February 23 2018 9:22 PM EST2018-02-24 02:22:02 GMT
    (Source: Raycom)(Source: Raycom)
    (Source: Raycom)(Source: Raycom)

    The whole country seems to be on edge after the recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida. A number of proposals are already on the table to try and prevent another mass shooting from happening. Earlier in the week, President Trump suggested arming certain teachers and ending gun-free zones. Terry Johnson, President of the Calcasieu Federation of Teachers, said teachers shouldn't have to take on that kind of responsibility. "Let's leave that to the police," Johnson sai...

    More >>

    The whole country seems to be on edge after the recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida. A number of proposals are already on the table to try and prevent another mass shooting from happening. Earlier in the week, President Trump suggested arming certain teachers and ending gun-free zones. Terry Johnson, President of the Calcasieu Federation of Teachers, said teachers shouldn't have to take on that kind of responsibility. "Let's leave that to the police," Johnson sai...

    More >>
  • Police urge residents not to leave firearms unattended in vehicles

    Police urge residents not to leave firearms unattended in vehicles

    Thursday, February 22 2018 12:13 PM EST2018-02-22 17:13:49 GMT
    (Source: Raycom)(Source: Raycom)
    (Source: Raycom)(Source: Raycom)

    Police are urging everyone to not leave firearms unattended in their vehicles. The Lake Charles Police Department stated that between Jan. 1, 2018 and Feb. 16, 2018 there have been a total of 27 vehicle burglaries where a firearm has been stolen. That means 27 firearms are in the hands of a thief that could possibly be resold or used to commit a violent crime. The police officers must then come into contact with these violent offenders and result in a possible armed confrontatio...

    More >>

    Police are urging everyone to not leave firearms unattended in their vehicles. The Lake Charles Police Department stated that between Jan. 1, 2018 and Feb. 16, 2018 there have been a total of 27 vehicle burglaries where a firearm has been stolen. That means 27 firearms are in the hands of a thief that could possibly be resold or used to commit a violent crime. The police officers must then come into contact with these violent offenders and result in a possible armed confrontatio...

    More >>
  • Authorities: Jennings man bites officer during arrest

    Authorities: Jennings man bites officer during arrest

    Friday, February 23 2018 6:58 PM EST2018-02-23 23:58:20 GMT
    Miles Hoffpauir (Source: Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff's Office)Miles Hoffpauir (Source: Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff's Office)
    Miles Hoffpauir (Source: Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff's Office)Miles Hoffpauir (Source: Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff's Office)

    A man bit an officer while the officer was trying to arrest him for fighting while intoxicated. Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff's Office was responding to a call at 3:30 a.m. on Sheridan Street in Iowa, Lake Charles about a drunken fight. Miles Hoffpauir, 34, entered the residence of his sister-in-law and was so intoxicated and belligerent that she called the cops.  When deputies arrived at the home, they struggled to handcuff Hoffpauir as he bit one deputy and fought with ...

    More >>

    A man bit an officer while the officer was trying to arrest him for fighting while intoxicated. Jeff Davis Parish Sheriff's Office was responding to a call at 3:30 a.m. on Sheridan Street in Iowa, Lake Charles about a drunken fight. Miles Hoffpauir, 34, entered the residence of his sister-in-law and was so intoxicated and belligerent that she called the cops.  When deputies arrived at the home, they struggled to handcuff Hoffpauir as he bit one deputy and fought with ...

    More >>
Powered by Frankly