MADISON, Miss. (WJTV) — A Madison church said they discovered that an employee took nearly $332,000 from the church.
Broadmoor Baptist Church released a statement saying they would not seek criminal charges against Riley Brown. However, he was no longer an employee.
The church the funds had not been properly authorized or reported. They allege that Brown took the funds over a 27-month time period and used them for his personal benefit.
The statement said the transactions were discovered in September 2017. Although they are not pressing charges, they said they are reporting the findings to the IRS and the state Department of Revenue.
They have also made personnel changes and replaced the in-house accounting and hired a full-time CPA to oversee the finances.
Read the full statement below:
“As a result of an internal policy review, we identified financial transactions that had not been properly authorized or reported totaling approximately $332,000. These transactions were discovered in September 2017, and were primarily over a 27-month period of time. These transactions were undertaken by one individual, Riley Brown, circumventing our existing internal policies and procedures, for his personal benefit. Riley Brown is no longer an employee of ours and we are in the process of reporting our findings to the Internal Revenue Service and the Mississippi Department of Revenue. As a body of Christ, we sought to find a proper balance between accountability and grace; and given our changes in personnel and the significant new safeguards and internal controls we have added, and will continue to add, we are confident we can responsibly steward the resources entrusted to us. While we chose not to press criminal charges against this individual, we will fully cooperate with prosecutors if it is independently pursued.
In addition to the improved policies and procedures, we have replaced our in-house accounting and finance team and have hired a full-time CPA, with deep non-profit experience, to oversee our finance and accounting practices. We are using outside accounting professionals to assist in the transition and also interviewing new audit firms.”
WJTV 12 also reached out to Madison County District attorney Michael Guest about the issue. Below is his statement:
“My office has not been directly contacted by the Church but we recently became aware of the embezzlement allegations at Broadmoor. We intend to begin an investigation into this matter to determine if a crime has been committed and what recourse our office might have. Until the investigation is completed, I do not believe it would be proper to comment further on the matter.”