Charges filed against former Bono Fire Protection District treasurer

BONO, Ark. – For years, Glenn Dola McGinnis wrote herself checks and forged the Fire Chief’s name, a probable cause affidavit filed in May alleges.

Stealing almost $250,000 before anyone noticed, McGinnis admitted to her misdeeds after waiving her Miranda Rights during an interview with police, the probable cause affidavit says. During the interview, McGinnis said she had been stealing money for years for personal use. She not only signed the name of Fire Chief Trent Edwards, but she said she may also have signed the name of the prior fire chief, too. A number of personal purchases were made at Walmart and Office Max using department checks. 185 checks were written in total.

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McGinnis is currently charged with one felony count of theft of property for an amount greater than $25,000 (there isn’t a higher statute) and one felony count for forgery in the second degree.

On Monday, June 25, Second Judicial District Prosecutor Scott Ellington told NEA Report the two counts were filed but may not be the only ones. Several factors will influence the prosecutor’s decision to file additional charges. While the prosecutor could attempt to charge McGinnis multiple times on each count, the office would have a difficult time getting consecutive sentences vs. concurrent ones, which would all run together. Primarily, Ellington said he prefers to add more charges based on what he learns he can proceed to trial with rather than have to drop charges he is unable to proceed with.

McGinnis has a motion and plea date on June 29.

The incident was discovered on or around April 24, 2018, when Edwards filed a report in reference to stolen funds from the fire department account. Chief Michael Parrish of Bono Police Department asked for the Craighead County Sheriff’s Department to handle the investigation. A 2015 KAIT article said Parrish served on the fire department as well.

Financial records from 2010-2018 were eventually provided to investigators, who found several checks written to McGinnis with a signature that appeared to read Edwards, along with the checks written to CASH. This led to the aforementioned police interview where McGinnis reportedly admitted to the crimes.

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