A 21-year-old northern Michigan woman was charged with embezzling nearly $4,500 from Home Depot. The woman worked at Home Depot in Traverse City for about two and a half years, and she stole the money over a period of about three months-spanning from November of last year until early February, when she was caught.

The woman committed the thefts over a period of 18 different transactions, where she would either credit refunds from customers to her own debit card, or refund money to her debit card for items she had purchased but did not return. A fraud alert program in Home Depot's computer system eventually alerted loss-prevention workers, who contacted police.

Financial transactions are closely recorded, especially at major retail outlets, and police said it is difficult for someone to get away with this type of embezzlement for very long. The woman claimed that she had recently moved out of her parents' house and into an apartment with her boyfriend, and that she needed the money to help set them up in their new place.

The woman is being charged with embezzlement of between $1,000 and $20,000, which is a felony punishable by up to five years in prison. She can also be fined up to $10,000 or three times the amount she embezzled-whichever is greater.

In this tough economy, some people are tempted to act desperately and commit a crime such as embezzlement. Whether it is due to tough economic conditions, or to underlying psychological or emotional issues, when a person is facing serious charges such as these, a creative and resourceful defense attorney can help achieve the best possible outcome. Fast action in securing an attorney can be critical to a positive outcome.

Whether facing an investigation or after being arrested, our Okemos, Michigan law firm aggressively and effectively represents clients facing white collar crimes charges such as embezzlement.