Big Island woman faces 27 counts of embezzlement

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By Tom Wilmoth

A Big Island woman is facing 27 counts of embezzlement from H & H Food Market.

Christina Carmichael Poore, 37, was arrested in April. The 27 embezzlement charges span a time period between July 1, 2005, and Dec. 1, 2007. In each charge she is accused of embezzling more than $200 from H & H Food Market off Lee Jackson Highway.

According to Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney John Wheelock, Poore, who was employed by the store, allegedly used the store's return key to extract cash from the register. That key is used to obtain cash when a customer returns products.

Wheelock said the store owner became concerned about the number and the amount of returns being recorded. The owner conducted an investigation and estimated the total alleged loss in the case in excess of $20,000.

Each of the 27 charges represents money allegedly taken monthly from the store's account, ranging from $250 a month to as much as $1,500.

Poore could face from one to 20 years on each charge if convicted.

A bench trial on the case has been set for July 22 at 9 a.m. in Bedford County Circuit Court.