WHITESTOWN, Ind. – A former Whitestown clerk is accused of stealing about $32,000 over a two-year period.
Johnetta K. Wills faces 14 counts of theft, forgery, official misconduct and corrupt business influence. According to court documents, the $32,000 came from traffic tickets in Whitestown town court.
Indiana State Police began their investigation of Wills in July 2019. The town attorney became suspicious two months earlier because the traffic court’s bank account didn’t have any deposits for the entire year.
Wills resigned as clerk on July 1, 2019. Her replacement discovered that there were no records of payments received; multiple people came forward with receipts while no money had been deposited in the court’s account. Records of the tickets didn’t make their way to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
Several employees said they had seen Wills accept payments for traffic tickets and place them in a cash box, according to court documents.
After obtaining a subpoena for Wills’ bank account, state police discovered several deposits other than Wills’ biweekly paycheck. Several were money orders—and investigators traced those back to traffic tickets by matching signatures on the money orders with traffic records.
Police interviewed Wills in August 2020. Wills told investigators she took money for the tickets and no one else knew about the scheme. She said any cash deposits over $100 in her bank account were from money she’d received for tickets. Investigators discovered dozens of such deposits.
Wills “further advised that she did not think that $32,000 was an unreasonable number for the amount of money she took over a two-year period,” according to court documents.
Boone County Prosecutor Kent Eastwood requested a special prosecutor, since Wills was a government employee.