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Bank employee charged with forgery, theft

An employee of the Senoia branch of the Bank of the Ozarks was arrested Tuesday for theft and forgery after she activated dormant accounts, forged withdrawal slips and withdrew more than $39,000 from the accounts.

Kathy Graham, 56, of Senoia, was charged with four counts of felony first degree forgery and one count of felony theft by taking, according to Det. Jason Ercole.

Ercole said bank officials on April 17 contacted Senoia Police after an internal investigation revealed that one of their former employees had committed several acts of fraud against several customers. The officials provided detailed records and video surveillance footage from the bank to the police department outlining how the fraud was committed, Ercole said.

Ercole said the police investigation revealed that around September 2012 Graham used the bank computer system to identify dormant customer accounts. Dormant accounts are accounts that have no activity for longer than six months. When she identified such an account, she contacted the operations division of the bank either by email or phone and had the accounts reactivated.

“Once the accounts were reactivated, she forged withdrawal slips with the customers information and withdrew money from their accounts. She would then keep the funds for her own personal use. In all, four bank customers were defrauded for a total of $39,507.32,” said Ercole. “Graham was relieved of her duties immediately once the fraud was detected and, of course, was terminated once it was confirmed.” 

Coweta County Senior Magistrate Judge James C. Stripling on Tuesday signed five warrants against Graham after hearing sworn testimony from the investigator handling the case. Graham turned herself into the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office Tuesday afternoon, said Ercole.

Ercole commended Bank of the Ozarks officials and investigators for their detailed investigation and their quick action in the matter. Bank of the Ozarks reimbursed all customers for any losses suffered. 

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