Crime & Courts

City clerk, 69, stole thousands from southeast Kansas town, indictment alleges

A retired city clerk is facing federal charges for allegedly embezzling more than $36,500 from the Montgomery County town she worked for.

An indictment announced Thursday accuses Carole Sue Coker, 69, of stealing the money from Caney, Kan., in a so-called check-for-cash scheme. She is charged with one count of mail fraud and one count of bank fraud.

During her 40-year career as Caney city clerk, Coker kept some of the cash paid to the city and didn’t record all of the checks written to it in the city’s books to cover up the thefts, the indictment alleges. She then made it look like the books balanced, the indictment says.

If convicted, Coker could be ordered to spend up to 20 years in prison for mail fraud and up to 30 years for bank fraud. She could also be fined up to $1.25 million dollars.

Caney has a population of about 2,000 people and is located about 120 miles southeast of Wichita near the Kansas-Oklahoma border.

Amy Renee Leiker: 316-268-6644, @amyreneeleiker