MIDLAND, Mich. – A former employee of Coleman Community Schools in Midland, Michigan, has decided to take her chances with a jury after being charged with embezzlement. Christine Johnson, 57, is accused of taking money from the school district in October 2022. Johnson served as the district’s payroll benefits specialist and is facing a felony embezzlement charge of between $1,000 and $20,000 by an agent or trustee.
During a court hearing, Johnson rejected a plea offer to plead guilty to attempted embezzlement. Midland County Assistant Prosecutor Michael Yelsik presented the plea agreement, but Johnson decided to proceed to trial. When asked if she understood the penalties she faces if convicted, Johnson confirmed that she did. She is currently out of jail on a $1,000 personal recognizance bond, and no trial date has been set.
According to Superintendent Jennifer McCormack, Johnson was hired by the Coleman Community Schools Board of Education in December 2021 but resigned from her position in mid-October 2022. McCormack stated that the school administration fully cooperated with the Midland County Sheriff’s Office during the investigation.
Due to the ongoing legal proceedings, McCormack was unable to provide specific details about the alleged embezzlement. However, she has expressed the district’s commitment to transparency and ensuring the proper use of taxpayer funds.
The case against Christine Johnson highlights the serious consequences of embezzlement and the importance of financial accountability within educational institutions. As the legal process moves forward, the school district and community will be watching closely for a resolution to this matter.
In summary, a former employee of Coleman Community Schools in Midland, Michigan, is facing charges of embezzlement. Christine Johnson, the district’s former payroll benefits specialist, rejected a plea offer and has decided to proceed to trial. The school administration provided full cooperation during the investigation, and Superintendent Jennifer McCormack emphasized the district’s commitment to transparency and responsible financial management. The case serves as a reminder of the importance of maintaining financial accountability within educational institutions.