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Former N.C. Chief Charged with Embezzlement

June 24, 2013  | 

The former Cherryville (N.C.) Police chief will plead guilty to embezzlement by funneling city monies into a slush fund he later raided to purchase personal firearms, according to the FBI.

For nearly two years, Woodrow "Woody" Burgess instructed the city's finance director to issue checks to "The Great Outdoors" that he used to purchase the firearms. He embezzled more than $11,000 from nine checks, the U.S. Attorney's Office announced Monday. Burgess resigned in October.

Burgess faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

From January 2007 through November 2008, Burgess instructed Bonny Alexander, the city's finance director, to issue the checks. Burgess told Alexander the funds had been authorized as a "cash-out" for "compensatory time." Alexander placed entries in the city's accounting records that the expenditures were for a certain amount of "sick time" or "comp time" due to "Woody."

In January, Alexander pleaded guilty to five embezzlement counts for stealing over $435,000 from the city. She faces a maximum term of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine per count. Burgess will appear in court on Tuesday for a plea hearing.

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