Rural Bayard woman arrested for forgery, theft

A rural Bayard woman arrested on suspicion of multiple counts of forgery and theft after allegedly embezzling more than $57,000 from a Western Nebraska Housing Opportunities account died Wednesday.

Court documents obtained by KNEB News indicate 55 year old Terri Sinks, the former Twin Cities Development administrative assistant and housing coordinator for WNHO, superimposed her name on 12 checks from November of 2011 until May of this year. The checks were written on the housing account.

The documents indicate Twin Cities Development Executive Director Rawnda Pierce told Scottsbluff Police she noticed on June 6th the account had been short on funds. Pierce said when reviewing the May 31st statement she discovered a $2,775 check dated May 16th had been issued to Sinks, who had access to both TCD and WNHO checks and bank statements.

The documents say Pierce told police her signature had been forged on the bottom of the check and she then confronted Sinks, who admitted to embezzling the money and was immediately terminated.

Pierce says Sinks contacted Pierce the next day and gave her a cashier's check in the amount of the forged check. But the documents say Pierce then reviewed other bank statements going back to late 2011 and found her forged signature on 11 other checks. Sinks was arrested Tuesday and posted bond.

KNEB News has since learned Sinks passed away Wednesday morning.

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