By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
An Atmore woman, charged more than two years ago with embezzling money from her employer, avoided possible jail time this week by accepting a plea to a lesser charge.
Jamie LeAnne McCoy, 35, was initially charged with first-degree theft of property. Court documents show that Circuit Judge Jeff White accepted on June 10 her guilty plea to one count of third-degree theft of property.
In exchange, she will not serve any time behind bars. Instead, she was given a 12-months suspended sentence, followed by 24 months of unsupervised probation. She was also ordered to make full restitution.
McCoy worked with local realtor Lisa Reynolds for several years at another realty company until Reynolds went out on her own. McCoy was the office manager at Reynolds Real Estate from the time the company was established until her arrest on June 1, 2017.
Unconfirmed reports are that McCoy used the company checking account to siphon money from the firm over a relatively lengthy period, and the total had grown to almost $40,000.
Atmore Police Chief Chuck Brooks refused to confirm or deny the total of ill-gotten funds the local woman accumulated over the course of her criminal behavior. Brooks pointed out that under Alabama law, a person can be charged with theft in the first degree if the value of stolen property is more than $2,500.
Reynolds said this week that she was glad to put the matter behind her, especially since she has been repaid her monetary losses. Court documents show that the entire amount that was stolen was paid directly to Reynolds by members of McCoy’s family.
“I got the full amount that was taken,” she said, also remaining tight-lipped over the restitution. “That was the only way I would agree to the deal. Jamie confessed, and she paid in full. It’s a shame we had to go through this, but she knew she was wrong.”
The local realtor also expressed appreciation for the work done by the local district attorney’s office in resolving the matter.
“I want to thank District Attorney Steve Billy for staying on top of this and getting a satisfactory resolution,” she said.