MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - A prominent real estate agent stands accused of stealing money from a local church. Leaders of the First Independent Methodist Church in Mobile said Evelyn Mace was hired as a church secretary nearly three years ago.
The 58-year-old was booked into Metro Jail Monday and charged with first degree theft by deception. Police said she had been stealing money from the church for quite some time.
"What we've been able to determine right now, it's about $47,000," said Cpl. Chris Levy with the Mobile Police Department.
Authorities said she squandered the money on herself.
"Paying her own utility bills ... She took some money to the casinos in Mississippi and got some landscaping done," said Cpl. Levy.
However, Mace also has a second job as a prominent real estate agent.
Reverend Michael Vise with the church can't understand why she would target them. The church released a statement saying, "We realized during a routine budget audit that something was amiss. It was dealt with and was an isolated incident."
"They had just kind of a loose system. They put a lot of trust in her, and she clearly violated that trust," said Cpl. Levy.
Allegedly, she did it by writing church checks, stealing petty cash and using credit cards that belong to board members. Police said her paper trail made it easy to follow her spending.
"Detectives were able to sign a warrant on her on the 17th of this month. Contact was made with her, and she turned herself in," said Cpl. Levy.
Reverend Vise is out of town for the holidays but said he would speak to FOX10 when he returns on Monday.
Evelyn Mace she was released from Metro Jail Monday and is already back at work at her real estate job. When FOX10 caught up with her, she declined to comment.
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