Police say that a Fairfield woman embezzled thousands of dollars from the Fairfield Little League over a three year period.
A criminal complaint filed in the Jefferson County Courthouse says that Catherine Lynn Schafer of Fairfield stole more than $13,000 from the Little League.
The case is being handled by the Washington County Attorney due to a conflict of interest at the Jefferson County Attorney’s Office.
Court documents say that between November 26th, 2013 and October 6th, 2014 Schafer submitted “24 claims totaling approximately $13,817.96 for reimbursement mainly to either her name or Jack [Schafer]’s name (her husband) for financial gain.”
The documents say that other Little League members couldn’t account for the purchased equipment or have never seen it. Many of the 24 claims do not have invoice documentation.
Some claims did have invoices filed. Police found that several of the companies represented on the submitted invoices do not exist. In one of those invoices, Schafer was reimbursed $525 for pitching machine balls. She submitted an invoice from 7th Inning Stretch of Cedar Rapids. The company does not exist.
In another incident on March 13th, 2014, Schafer requested reimbursement for $2,500 for Turface, a soil conditioner. Initially, Schafer did not submit an invoice. After being told an invoice was required, she later submitted an invoice from Field of Dreams of Monaca, PA. Police say the company does not exist and the phone number comes back to a call service. Schafer apparently admitted during an interview that this was “a fraudulent invoice she just made up.”
Schafer’s alleged scam came not long after her husband, Jack Schafer was ordered to pay more than $60,000 in restitution for an ID Theft case.
In 2009, Jack Schafer pleaded guilty to forging checks in the name of James Millard totaling more than $20,000. Following the guilty plea, the Van Buren District Court ruled that Jack Schafer’s actions amounted to identity theft.
Iowa law allows a person suffering monetary loss as a result of identity theft by another person to bring action and recover three times the damages. The Iowa Law was designed to discourage the growing crime of Identity Theft and to reimburse victims for the hassles created.
Jack Schafer has not been charged in relation to the alleged Little League scam.
Catherine Schafer is being charged with ongoing criminal conduct and commission of specified unlawful activity, a class B felony; first degree theft, a class C felony; and two counts of forgery, an aggravated misdemeanor.
A criminal charge is merely an accusation and defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.