A former Freeborn County commissioner on Tuesday pleaded guilty to wire fraud in connection to using nearly $1 million in escrow funds for personal use.

Linda Kae Tuttle-Olson, 60, of Albert Lea, admitted that from January through June of 2010, she stole at least $920,000 from escrow accounts set up for others.

Tuttle-Olson was president of Freeborn County Abstract Co., also known as Albert Lea Abstract Co., which conducted real estate closings. She admitted sending checks from one bank to another to create artificial balances in various accounts and using the money herself.

Tuttle-Olson was charged on Jan. 10, 2011. She pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge David Doty.

She faces up to 20 years in federal prison. Doty will set her sentence at a later hearing.

Albert Lea police, the Insurance Fraud Division of the Minnesota Department of Commerce, the FBI and the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation investigated the case.