A onetime bookkeeper has been sentenced for stealing roughly $200,000 from a north metro community college’s foundation and a support group for alcoholics.
Alison Klug, 38, of Mound, was sentenced this week in Hennepin County District Court to one year in the workhouse and ordered to pay restitution to cover the money that she stole. She had a 46-month term stayed, but it can be imposed if she violates conditions tied to her five years’ probation.
Klug pleaded guilty in May to six counts of theft by swindle and is now on the hook to pay $190,655 to the North Hennepin Community College Foundation and $22,105 to the Tonka Alano Society, located in Mound.
At sentencing, three people associated with the foundation detailed the impact of the thefts, including the first-ever cancellation of a fundraising dinner that had been held every year since 1985. A supervisor said she lost her job with the foundation in the fallout from Klug’s crimes.
In a post-sentencing statement, the foundation said it remains “focused on the future and rebuilding from the theft.”
The county attorney’s office had sought to have Klug’s 46-month term imposed. However, Judge Lisa Janzen’s sentence was a downward departure from sentencing guidelines.
The judge noted that Klug has serious mental health difficulties and is open to treatment. Terms of her probation include abstaining from alcohol and illicit drugs.
Klug started working with the foundation in Brooklyn Park as a bookkeeper through a temp agency in 2014. She used the alias Alison Reily. An outside auditor’s annual review of the foundation’s financial records in September 2016 found that Klug had generated duplicate paychecks for herself, according to prosecutors.
The auditor questioned Klug at the office. She then left and never returned.
Her thefts from the Tonka Alano Society occurred from mid-September 2016 until early November. She was the society’s unpaid lead treasurer, but she was depositing checks to her from the organization. By the time a society member looked at the organization’s bank account, there was $5 in it.
State court records show Klug has earlier convictions for misdemeanor fifth-degree assault and misdemeanor harassment and stalking.