Oak Park official busted for alleged counterfeit

OAK PARK, Mich. (WJBK) - For the second time in a year, a clerk in the city of Oak Park is charged with embezzling taxpayer money.

The first time an Oak Park official stole from the city, the hustle ran for two years, but the second official accused of trying her luck wasn’t lucky at all. Officials say they foiled her caper in less than 24 hours.

“We instituted a whole variety of layers and additions of security,” said Erik Tungate, Oak Park city manager. “As a result of that, we just recently now identified what I would define as a counterfeiting operation.”

According to police, the culprit in this case is Shemikia Latoya-Renee Terry, a clerk in Oak Park’s Treasury Department.

Tungate says Terry was hired just before Stephanie Sumner was caught chiseling taxpayers out of more than $400,000. She funneled the dough to her husband, Michael, by sending real checks to phony companies. The felonious couple recently copped to embezzlement charges.

But Tungate says Terry was apparently not keeping up with current events because the city was, as a result, now keeping close tabs.

“The issue was caught the day after it happened. and we’re dealing with it now,” Tungate said.

Tungate says Terry was responsible for depositing cash that residents pay the city for all kinds of services.

“The water department, recreation, the library, you name it,” he said.

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