A former treasurer of the Round Lake Beach Cultural and Civic Center Foundation pleaded not guilty to theft charges Thursday after being accused of stealing more than $10,000 from the nonprofit organization.
Debra Knill, 46, is set to go to trial May 7 on three counts of theft over $10,000, Lake County Judge Daniel Shanes said.
If found guilty on any of the charges, she could be sentenced up to seven years in prison, officials said. Probation is also an option.
Knill remains free from Lake County jail on a $25,000 signature bond.
Defense attorney Jeremy Harter did not comment after Knill's arraignment hearing.
Authorities said officials at the civic center foundation discovered money was missing after several vendor invoices from previous festivals were not paid. Foundation officials examined account records, discovered a discrepancy in funding, and turned over their findings to Round Lake Beach police.
Authorities said the theft of funds is believed to have occurred between Aug. 1, 2016, and Jan. 1, 2018, and ultimately totaled $10,609.25.
Round Lake Beach Deputy Police Chief Michael Scott has said the civic center foundation was formed in 2006 to support the cultural and civic center in raising funds and to promote events at the center at 2007 North Civic Center Way. The foundation is an independent entity that operates separate from the village with its own governing board and financial record- keeping department. Knill is not a village official, Scott has said.
Knill is due back in court March 2 for a case management conference.