Convicted former bank teller charged in second case

Published 10:56 am Thursday, July 14, 2022

A former bank teller with a prior conviction for felony theft has been charged with four more felony counts in a separate case at the same bank.

Bonnie Ann Kilpatrick, 49, of Austin, has been charged with two counts of felony theft and one count each of aggravated forgery and identity theft.

She made her first court appearance Thursday in Mower County District Court and entered not guilty pleas to all four counts.

Kilpatrick, who was a teller with First Farmers & Merchants Bank in Austin from 2020 to 2021, was convicted in November of 2021 for another case in which she admitted to stealing $28,600 from a personal account. She was sentenced to five years probation and 45 days in jail and ordered to pay $35,419.88 in restitution.

In this newest case, Kilpatrick is accused of stealing a total of $16,300 from another account at the same bank. According to the court complaint, in records obtained from First Farmers & Merchants, detectives found that Kilpatrick allegedly made 12 cash withdrawals from the victim’s account between May 6 and Nov. 2, 2020.

Withdrawal slips were used in the thefts, but the victim stated to an Austin Police Department detective that he doesn’t use slips, choosing instead to write checks when taking money out. He also stated that he only takes out larger amounts between $8,000 and $10,000.

Each of the 12 alleged withdrawals were for amounts of $2,500 or less, with the largest amount withdrawn on Oct. 14, 2020.

After the detective received the documentation from the bank, it was discovered that Kilpatrick was the bank teller who processed all of the fraudulent withdrawals, creating withdrawal slips and initialed them as the teller.

In 10 of the 12 total withdrawals, Kilpatrick allegedly forged the victim’s signature.

The court complaint states that the first theft took place on May 6, 2020, when $700 was taken from the account. Also on that day, Kilpatrick allegedly ran a query of accounts with balances of $250,000.

After being alerted to the fraud, the bank returned the missing funds.

The thefts in this case overlapped those of the first case, which took place from March of 2020 to March of 2021 and involved 15 incidents of theft of amounts ranging from $1,600 and $3,500.

Surveillance footage taken at the bank on three separate occasions showed Kilpatrick completing transactions on the victim’s account without the victim being present.

Kilpatrick initially denied taking the money, but later admitted it, indicating that she had a gambling problem and that all the money she stole had been spent.