A former clerk for the town of Grantsburg has been charged with uttering a forgery, a class H felony, that could result in a $10,000 fine, 6 years in prison or both.
Lynne M. Harmon, 37, Grantsburg, was town clerk for approximately five months before issues became clear. The town chair told authorities Harmon was scheduled to work 20 hours a week at the part time position, however she was only putting in about eight hours.
According to the criminal complaint, officers were called about a forgery complaint in August when town chair Jim Paden told authorities the town had problems with Harmon since she started. Harmon took over for former clerk Romey Nelson, who left the clerk’s office in December.
Paden was looking over a number of checks when he found two that did not have his signature on them, but they did have initials of bank employees. One check was in the amount of $184.70 and the second was for $206, both were from April 2019 and had Harmon’s signature on the back.
Authorities found a description for the second check was “shovel mileage clean election” but could not find a description for the other check. Paden told officers neither of the checks had been approved by the board, which they need to be to be taken to the bank.
The signatures on the back of the checks also did not match the approved payee signature.
Harmon later told officers that she had signed the checks and when asked why she responded, “Cause we were hurting.” She continued to apologize for the mistake. She continued to explain to authorities she had used the money to pay for groceries.
Harmon entered a plea of not guilty in August and is scheduled to be in court September 23 for a plea hearing.