Rock Island County auditor and chief deputy auditor cleared of theft of over $115,000 in taxpayer funds

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Rock Island County Auditor April Palmer and Chief Deputy Auditor Amanda Van Daele were cleared of any collusion or prior knowledge related to the theft of over $115,000 in taxpayer funds.

As reported on OurQuadCities.com, on June 1, the Rock Island County Auditor’s Office received an email from an unknown party posing as a city contracting partner, requesting future payments be made through Automated Clearing House information. After receiving the email, the office authorized over $100,000 to the fraudulent account.

In a statement released Tuesday by Rock Island County Board Chairman Richard Brunk and Vice-Chairman Brian Vyncke, “a digital forensic audit, which included an analysis of emails, documents, and files, indicates that there was no prior knowledge or collusion, regarding the theft. It revealed no unexpected activity by the Auditor or the Chief Deputy Auditor.”

According to the statement, the “audit was conducted by Marcum LLP, a national accounting and advisory firm. The audit focused primarily on the Auditor’s Office and the Treasurer’s Office.” The letter also states that the “forensic auditor’s report prioritizes the creation of detailed procedural manuals within the Auditor’s and Treasurer’s Offices, to allow those offices ‘the ability to follow proper protocol, and test the prescribed procedures in order to prevent any type of action that would result in the county (taxpayers) becoming a victim of misappropriation of assets.’ In addition to this, the report highlights other opportunities to align with best practices, not only within the Auditor’s and Treasurer’s Offices, but in various other county offices involved in the allocation and/or distribution of county assets.”

The statement is available in its entirety here.

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