MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - A church secretary and prominent real estate agent was arrested for stealing from First Independent Methodist Church. The pastor said his congregation is struggling to deal with the deceit, and the struggle was only made worse when they found out how the money was allegedly spent.
"I went to the bank and obtained bank records, and it had all the casinos in Biloxi listed with expenditures," said Vice.
He said he was doing and audit on the church to help get its finances in order when he found the inch thick statement with casino after casino listed.
Vice said when he confronted her, Mace asked, "Why didn't you stop me?"
"I told her to come and apologize to the church on Sunday, and we didn't have to involve authorities," said Vice. "She did not show up, and we haven't seen her since."
Vice said he turned his findings over to police. Evelyn Mace was arrested and charged with first degree theft by deception.
Vice said church members were so hurt by Mace's alleged actions because she'd been with the church for decades, and no one suspected a thing.
"They trusted her," said Vice.
Mace is accused of stealing some $47,000 from her church family.
Vice said the church is made up of 140 people, with 40 to 70 regularly showing up for service.
"These people are so hurt. I don't think general public realizes the damage done to a church family when one person betrays the trust that has been given them," said Vice.
Vice said Mace also made a trip to Talladega on the church's dime, paid her utility bill, her house note and her insurance. Vice said transactions show Mace would spend $1,200 in less than two hours at a casino, all of it coming from the coffers.
"We're going to pray for her because she knew that spending God's money in a casino and throwing it away was not good for her, for the church and it sure wasn't pleasing to our Savoir," said Vice.
Evelyn Mace, 59, is out on a $7,500 bond. She had no comment for FOX10 News.
A year ago, the Spanish Fort Toros took home the 5A State crown with a win over McAdory. Tonight, the Toros are back in the championship game, in hopes of two consecutive state titles. Spanish Fort (14-0) will go head to head with Muscle Shoals (13-1).
Global civil rights icon Nelson Mandela, whose legacy is ending South African apartheid, has died.
Mobile County Sheriff's Office arrested 27-year-old John Hicks and 22-year-old Amber Trawick for a number of meth related charges including chemical endangerment of a child and trafficking illegal drugs.
Students at Council Traditional School had a lot to cheer about Thursday, December 5.The US Department of Education named Council a “National Blue Ribbon School.”
An oil company snaking a pipeline from Ten Mile Terminal in Mobile County to Pascagoula, Mississippi met with Fox10 News Thursday to discuss its construction plans.