Former clerk in Anguilla gets probation

Published 12:01 pm Friday, February 21, 2014

The former clerk of the Town of Anguilla will spend five years on probation and pay $10,000 restitution after pleading guilty to grand larceny.

Manika Kelly pleaded guilty last month to one count of grand larceny, according to information released Thursday by State Auditor Stacey Pickering’s office.

Kelly, 35, embezzled $107,444.67 from the town of Anguilla over a five-year period from October 2006 through November 2011, according to the auditor’s office.

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“This case is an example of where a shortage of funds was discovered during a routine audit of the town, and we were able to determine that Ms. Kelly was embezzling money from the taxpayers of Anguilla,” Pickering said in an email release. “I am happy that we were able to return these funds to the town last year.”

An independent audit by Hodnett Co. of Rolling Fork initially revealed a shortage of $75,406.06 in water and sewer deposits between October 2008 and September 2011. A review by the State Auditor’s Office uncovered the additional shortage in deposits, according to court records.

On Sept. 18, 2012, the Auditor’s Office issued a demand in the amount of $141,026.30, and $108,000 — the amount of Kelly’s required bond as a public official — was returned to the Town of Anguilla on Jan. 8, 2013,

As town clerk, Kelly’s responsibilities included receiving and depositing fees paid to the town for water and sewer services.

Kelly served as town clerk for Anguilla from July 2001 to Feb. 7, 2012, when she was terminated, Anguilla’s town board attorney Allen S. Woodard has said.

Agents from the auditor’s office presented the case to the grand jury in July 2012.

The Mississippi Delta town of Anguilla is about 45 miles north of Vicksburg on U.S. 61 and has a population of about 700 people.

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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