Authorities say a former Chaffee County employee is on the run after allegations of embezzlement emerged.
An arrest warrant was issued Tuesday for 45-year-old Steven Paul Geske. Geske worked as the clerk to the board of county commissioners for one year, and in that time authorities believe he was dipping into a public fund. The fund, called a copy account, is paid into by banks, title companies, realtors and other clients, and used to cover those clients' photocopying fees. Seventeen clients total contribute to that account.
The Chaffee County Sheriff's Office says other employees caught on that something was amiss after clients complained about not receiving their account notices from Geske. Chaffee County Clerk Joyce Reno started an inquiry and discovered the funds were missing.
“I am extremely dismayed by the allegations that, if proven, are a shocking betrayal of the public trust," Reno said in a statement. "This is the first instance of this kind in my 41 years working in this office.”
Geske was last seen at work on April 29. The sheriff's office says that they were alerted to the missing funds on May 1.
Geske faces charges of embezzlement of public property, a class five felony; theft, a class six felony; and first degree official misconduct, a class two misdemeanor. If you have any information on his whereabouts, you are asked to call the Chafee County Sheriff's Office at 719-539-2596.
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