Former Port Vincent village clerk accused of stealing $16,000 in fines and fees _lowres

Brandi Deaton

A former clerk stole at least $16,000 in public funds while working for the village of Port Vincent, the Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office confirmed Thursday.

Brandi Deaton, 29, of Denham Springs, surrendered last week and faces one count each of felony theft, injuring public records, and malfeasance in office, according to a news release.

Deaton worked as an assistant clerk for about a year and a half from October 2013 through March 2015. The following month, the village contacted the Sheriff’s Office, and the state Legislative Auditor was also called to investigate.

“In her official capacity, she was able to collect fees and fines for the village. Mrs. Deaton was taking cash for the fees and fines and was failing to deposit them into the Village of Port Vincent account. She was, instead, depositing the funds into her personal bank account,” Sheriff Jason Ard said in the release.

Alderman Scotty Martone said Thursday he knew Deaton was fired earlier in the year on suspicion of stealing, but he didn’t realize the amount was so high.

“That’s a substantial amount of money for our small budget,” he said.

According to the town’s most recent audit, Port Vincent’s total net position on June 30, 2014, was about $480,000.

Mayor David Carter declined to comment Thursday evening, saying he will meet with state auditors next week and wants to discuss the matter with them first.