NBC10 - Renee Chenault-Fattah
A woman is accused of swiping tens of thousands of dollars from a Hatfield, Pa. church.
A woman charged with keeping track of a church’s funds is now charged with stealing them instead leaving her church with barely enough money to buy dinner for two.
Stephanie Kligge, 35, is accused of stealing $81,453.20 from the Emmanuel Evangelical Congregational Church on Main Street in Hatfield, Pa.
Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman and Hatfield Township Police Chief William Tierney announced Kligge’s arrest Thursday. According to authorities, Kligge stole the money over her year tenure as treasurer of the board for the church.
Kligge is accused of making 64 withdrawals between July 2012 and June 30, 2013 where she allegedly put more than $61,000 from church funds into her own personal account. She also allegedly took $20,000 in church funds to pay for personal gifts, according to authorities.
Along the way, Kligge concealed her actions by providing false monthly reports that showed a balance of more than $100,000 while she drained the church account down to just $36.11, according to investigators.
Magisterial District Judge Kenneth Deatelhauser set Kligge’s bail at $25,000 during her arraignment on five counts including theft and receiving stolen property during a Wednesday arraignment. Kligge was sent to county jail unable to post bail, according to court records.
A preliminary hearing was set for Christmas morning.