Investigation into theft from West Kelowna school's PAC finally moving ahead | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Investigation into theft from West Kelowna school's PAC finally moving ahead

Image Credit: Adam Proskiw
January 21, 2020 - 7:00 AM

It’s closing in on two years since the Glenrosa Elementary school parent advisory council announced one of their own allegedly stole “a substantial amount of money” from their coffers and still there have been no arrests made and no charges laid.

Today, however, council vice president Ashlee Cameron heard some good news. 

The file, which is in the hands of West Kelowna RCMP, has changed hands a number of times but the case is now “open and moving forward.”

“I don’t have any information other than that,” Cameron said, adding that she’s been banging on doors for six months to find out what’s happening and if and when the RCMP would move forward with an investigation.

It’s a step in the right direction in a situation that set the West Kelowna school’s fundraising body back for some time.

While Cameron said there’s no way to know exactly how much money went missing — all of their files were sent off to the gaming commission and the RCMP when the theft was made known — it was once pegged in the area of $20,000.

They’ve not seen a dime of that money returned and the first school year after it happened, budgets were tight.

“Teachers wish lists weren’t met and parents paid more for field trips,” she said. “But with some lovely help from quite a few of our parents and some fundraisers… it took four months to get into good standing. There was a lot of blood, sweat and tears for a lot of parents, but no kids went without this year.”

Cameron said, in general, the council is feeling good and optimistic about what lies ahead.

This whole process, however, has been a learning curve.

“It’s a lengthy process, not just with the RCMP. With the PAC we have to go through so many different hoops with the gaming commission,” she said.

They have worked to stay positive and have made an effort to ensure that the person suspected of the crime has not had her name released.

Many local parents know who it is and it was important to the other parents to keep things civil.

More will be revealed if there’s a criminal trial ahead.

The parents advisory council announced the theft in September 2018, with members alleging at the time that signatures were forged and bank accounts were drained of the proceeds from years of fundraising.

The funds are used for upgrading playgrounds, new equipment, field trips, hot lunches etc.

RCMP did not respond to a request for more information.

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