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Murrysville

Delmont officials work to recover money allegedly taken by former secretary

Patrick Varine
| Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019, 9:18 p.m.
Former Delmont Borough secretary-treasurer Karen L. Shola, center, departs Export District Judge Charles Conway’s office Tuesday after being charged with theft of $43,579 in municipal funds. Shola, who was borough secretary for nearly 14 years, is accused of using the money for multiple personal expenditures since January 2012.
Paul Peirce | Tribune-Review
Former Delmont Borough secretary-treasurer Karen L. Shola, center, departs Export District Judge Charles Conway’s office Tuesday after being charged with theft of $43,579 in municipal funds. Shola, who was borough secretary for nearly 14 years, is accused of using the money for multiple personal expenditures since January 2012.

Delmont officials are taking steps to recover money allegedly stolen by a former borough secretary.

Borough solicitor Dan Hewitt said former borough secretary and treasurer Karen Shola was bonded, and that the bond company has offered the borough a $35,000 settlement.

Shola, 67, of Pittsburgh was charged in October with theft, receiving stolen property, theft by failure to make required disposition of funds, misapplying entrusted government funds, dealing in unlawful proceeds and forgery. She is accused of taking nearly $44,000 over a period of six years from borough coffers.

Shola allegedly forged signatures on checks used for personal expenses. A borough check issued to pay a $221 fine Shola received in February 2018 for running a red light caught the attention of court clerks, triggering an eight-month investigation.

Hewitt said the bond company’s settlement offer, plus possible restitution once Shola’s case is adjudicated, should result in full recovery of the funds found to be missing.

Shola’s formal arraignment is set for Jan. 23 in Judge Timothy Krieger’s courtroom.

Hewitt said Krieger may choose to recuse himself, since he would have had some limited contact with Shola as a member of the borough’s civil service commission and as a borough resident.

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Patrick at 724-850-2862, pvarine@tribweb.com or via Twitter @MurrysvilleStar.

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