A woman accused of stealing more than $850,000 from a New Glarus nursing home over a ten-year period used a complex scheme that went undetected by annual audits, and even a forensic accountant hired to find it almost missed it.
According to the Wisconsin State Journal, 55-year-old Joyce Ziehli of Belleville was charged Tuesday with six felony counts of theft in a business setting over $10,000 by the Green County district attorney. A criminal complaint said she stole the money from the New Glarus Home, where she had worked as administrative secretary and bookkeeper. Investigators said she used the money to support a music magazine she published with her husband.
Rick Colby, who took over as New Glarus Home director last September, said Ziehli’s alleged scheme targeted insurance money sent to the nursing home and was virtually undetectable. The paper reports that she was caught last January after the nursing home changed to a different software program and another bookkeeper couldn’t get the numbers to add up. Ziehli was fired three days later and the forensic accountant was hired to investigate.
Ziehli is scheduled to make her initial court appearance Monday at the Green County Justice Center in Monroe.