Former NCSU Employee Arrested On Embezzlement, Conspiracy Charges
Posted July 24, 2003 5:58 a.m. EDT
RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolina State University campus police have charged a former NCSU employee, Jodi Smith, of Erwin, N.C., with 21 counts of embezzlement and four counts of conspiracy.
All of the charges are felonies. The charges are the result of an investigation by campus police and the university's Internal Audit Division.
The Erwin Police Department was investigating an identity-theft case when officers noticed Smith had a connection. Erwin police then contacted NCSU police, and both agencies were able to charge Smith with her crimes.
Smith turned herself into NCSU police along with her husband, who police say was an accomplice in the crime. Jodi Smith was being held in the Wake County jail Wednesday afternoon.
Her husband, Craig Smith, is charged with posing as an N.C. State student and conspiracy. Investigators said more arrests could be made, and more charges could be filed against the couple.
Jodi Smith is accused of embezzling approximately $43,000 though a complex scheme in which she manipulated controls and diverted funds from third-party sponsor accounts to her own use.
The university is insured against this loss, and no student accounts have been negatively impacted.
Smith resigned from her job as an Accounting Technician II in the university cashier's office June 23, 2003, the same day she was charged with financial identity fraud by campus police.
That initial charge triggered the investigation that resulted in Wednesday's additional charges.
Campus police said they anticipate bringing additional charges against persons in the community who are not associated with N.C. State but conspired with Smith to benefit monetarily from her actions.
The university has notified the SBI of Smith's actions as required by state law. It also has notified the state auditor's office.
According to Vice Chancellor of Finance and Business George Worsley, the university strengthened existing financial and personal-identity controls and procedures in the cashier's office following the initial discovery of Smith's actions. These controls and procedures are being reviewed weekly by the Chief Financial Officer and rigorously examined and tested by Internal Audit.
"I have full confidence in the thoroughness of the investigation and the corrective actions we have taken," NCSU Chancellor Marye Anne Fox said. "We have given this the highest priority, and I want to assure students and their families that no student will suffer a loss as a result of this incident."