Fulda woman charged with check forgery, theft from area nursing home
FULDA - After a long investigation, charges have been filed in Murray County District Court against 43-year-old Amy Hakeneis of Fulda, a former Maple Lawn Nursing Home employee accused of using company funds to purchase almost $150,000 gift cards over a three year period.
Hakeneis is charged with two counts of check forgery - make or alter check, two counts of check forgery - intent to defraud, and three counts of theft - divert corporate property.
According to the criminal complaint, Arlan Swanson, Director of Maple Lawn, contacted the Fulda Police Department in April 2016 regarding strange charges on their Hy-Vee credit account. According to Swanson, Hakeneis was the only person with access to the credit account. When Hakenies, who had been employed at the nursing home since 2007, expressed interest in helping to plan events for staff, she became responsible for purchasing items for the events, such as anniversaries and retirements. The Hy-Vee account was used exclusively for the events.
According to Swanson, the March 2016 statements showed more than $4,600 in gift card purchases. He told authorities Hakeneis was not authorized to purchase gift cards on the credit account.
Statements show that between April 2013 and March 2016, $148,524 in gift cards was purchased from Hy-Vee using the credit account, but according to Swanson, all gift cards for employee anniversaries were purchased by himself on his personal credit card.
The complaint states Swanson allegedly confronted Hakeneis about the Hy-Vee account in May of 2016, and she was terminated.
In December 2017, Swanson emailed copies of two checks to Fulda Police Chief Paul Kenney. The checks has been issued to US Foods, the company Maple Lawn used for food purchases. On both, US Foods had been covered with White-Out, and Hy-Vee had been hand-written in. The address on both was in Des Moines at the Hy-Vee corporate headquarters. After more investigation, 15 checks were found that had been made out to US Foods and altered to be to Hy-Vee.
According to Swanson, not all of the Hy-Vee bills were paid by altered checks. The online bill pay was also used to pay with Maple Lawn funds.
An investigation into the theft charges is currently underway with the Worthington Police Department. Hakeneis is scheduled to make an appearance on the Murray County charges Feb. 12.