At the top of this page, you will find links to a series of articles that illustrate the damage that can be done to an entire community when one individual chooses to steal other people’s money. We have chosen to spotlight this particular series because Benjamin Price, the reporter for the FERNANDINA BEACH (AMELIA ISLAND) NEWS LEADER , has done a masterful job in reporting the events from beginning to end. Mr. Price examines every aspect of this embezzlement so that you experience what the county residents undergo, not just the theft of dollars and cents but also the emotional theft that friends and family of the embezzler as well as other county residents live through.
If your purpose is to gain a better understanding of embezzlement, your time will be well spent. You will come to understand that the person that steals isn’t always the demon you would have them be but rather the neighbor next door that you have trusted for many years, as was the case with Julie Mixon.
We are not saying that you cannot trust your neighbors – simply that the times we live in mandate a watchful eye.
Julie Mixon betrayed her family, her co-workers, her friends, her community and herself. She paid for it with her life.
And in the end, you will see that her friends still to this day refuse to believe that she could have perpetrated such a crime. Such is our unwillingness, in the face of hard evidence, to believe that those that we love and trust are capable of such deceit. Be careful – that humanity albeit naïveté can be very costly both in financial and emotional dollars.
So, next time you take a look at your bookkeeper, who is after all only too human – if you hold her in high regard, do her a favor and keep watch over your books. She’ll thank you for it. Is she one of the 80% of the people that will steal given the right motivation (as per the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners)? You don’t know, nor we submit, does she.
The risks that you take every day in growing your business are necessary. This risk isn’t!
And if it isn't your bookkeeper that most concerns you – perhaps it's your family. You are gambling with their future as well!
At the top of this page and at the bottom of each article is the link to the original article. They are numbered in order of print date so that you can maintain the flow of information as it unfolds. We want to thank Michael Parnell, the editor of the Fernandina Beach News Leader together with Benjamin Price, the reporter for this series for permission to print the entire series on this site. It is their generosity that allows you, the small business owner to understand the damage that can be leashed on an entire community or in your case, your business. If you have any questions for Mr. Price, you may contact him at the link given at the bottom of each article.