Court records: Park district theft at $50,000

PAXTON — Documents filed Thursday in Ford County Circuit Court show that a former employee of the Paxton Park District allegedly spent $50,000 on personal merchandise using park district credit cards over a four-year period.

State's Attorney Matt Fitton on Thursday charged Beth E. Tabor, 43, of Paxton, with one count of theft of between $10,000 and $100,000. The Class 2 felony is punishable by up to four years of probation to a maximum of three to seven years in prison.

Tabor, a former administrative assistant for the park district, remained Friday at the Ford County jail on a $100,000 bond, meaning she must pay $10,000 to be released.

She was arrested Tuesday after a court-ordered search of her home.

Public defender Harvey Welch has been appointed to represent Tabor, and a preliminary hearing is set for 9:15 a.m. March 6.

Illinois State Police investigator Brad Cosgrove wrote in a verified statement of arrest filed in court that police believe Tabor used park district credit cards to buy "approximately $50,000 worth of personal merchandise." The purchases were made "from 2006 through 2010," Cosgrove wrote.

Earlier in the week, police declined to specify how much money Tabor allegedly stole, saying only that the amount was between $10,000 and $100,000.

Police also declined to say what items were bought; and Cosgrove's statement did not list any specific items. Fitton said Friday that he could not say what items were bought because he had not seen complete police reports.

The only other information court documents disclosed was that Tabor was arrested at 11:50 p.m. Tuesday at her home in the 200 block of West Pine Street.

A news release from District 21 state police on Wednesday said Tabor was arrested by Illinois State Police Zone 3 agents, Paxton police and Ford County sheriff's deputies following the execution of a search warrant at her home.

Investigators recovered numerous items from her home that were believed to have been purchased for personal use while she was employed by the park district from 2006 until May 2011, the release said.

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