Former Centerville employee pleads guilty to theft

Telegraph correspondentFebruary 5, 2013 

CENTERVILLE -- A former Centerville employee pleaded guilty Monday in Houston County Superior Court stemming from 2011 charges that she took money from the city.

City Administrator Patrick Eidson told council members about the plea during council’s regular monthly meeting Tuesday. He said he and Krista Bedingfield, city clerk, attended the hearing.

Cinnamon Adams Hovezak, a former City Hall administrative assistant, was charged with taking about $11,000 from the city.

City Attorney Rebecca Tydings said Tuesday that Hovezak pleaded guilty to one count of theft by taking by fiduciary and one count of computer forgery. She said for the first count, Hovezak received 15 years probation and for the second five years probation.

Tydings said the court mandated full restitution to the city. She said restitution includes the $11,000 taken and about $13,000 in expenses the city incurred in investigating accounts related to the theft.

Tydings said Hovezak will not be eligible for termination of probation for 10 years and until full restitution is made. She said Hovezak also is prohibited from holding a job where she would handle money or accounts.

“The city has vigorously pursued this because the theft was of public funds,” Tydings said. “We are very appreciative of the work of District Attorney George Hartwig and the victims advocates for all their support.”

According to reports, the GBI arrested Hovezak after city internal checks and balances alerted a supervisor to discrepancies in money she was handling. Tydings said Hovezak resigned suddenly from her job in the city clerk’s office when she became aware ledgers and financial records had been pulled for investigation.

Mayor John Harley said he and the city were glad to see the matter come to a conclusion.

Information from Telegraph archives was used in this report. Contact Michael W. Pannell at mwpannell@gmail.com.

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