Gonzales sentenced for theft

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Yolanda Marie Gonzales, 42, of Lakewood was sentenced to seven years intensive supervised probation with two years in the county jail work release program for stealing almost $80,000 from the Green Mountain Westerra Credit Union in Lakewood where she was the branch manager.

She was sentenced on June 14 in Jefferson County court.

She was indicted by a grand jury in September 2012 and pleaded guilty to Theft over $20,000 on Dec. 12, 2012.

According to information released from the office of District Attorney Peter Weir, Gonzales was employed as branch manager of the credit union between August 2011 and February 2012.

“One of her primary responsibilities was to supervise the daily balancing of the credit union’s vault,” information from the DA’s office indicated.

“Gonzales is alleged to have stolen the money by gradually adjusting the figures which reflected the money to be kept in the ‘extra drawers’ in the vault.

The credit union kept ‘extra drawers’ in the vault which were used by tellers from other branches who would occasionally fill in at the Lakewood branch. These drawers weren’t used often.”

Gonzales devised a plan that allowed her take money from the vault by increasing the amount attributed to the “extra drawers.” During this time, she also moved money into and out of her father’s and her brother’s accounts at the credit union in an attempt to conceal her theft.

Prosecutors asked for a prison sentence at the hearing on June 13 citing the significant breach of trust committed by Gonzales.

District Judge Lily Oeffler said that she found a prison sentence to be too harsh in this case.

The judge indicated that she found the situation perplexing in that Gonzales had no criminal history, no apparent drug or alcohol problems and she worked her way up through the company.