BY KEN LITTLE
More than 20 people have been charged in connection with an embezzlement scheme that resulted in more than $500,000 being stolen from Greene County Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Co., according to Assistant District Attorney General Cecil Mills Jr.
An investigation began in December 2012 after missing money from the company was reported to the Greeneville Police Department.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation assisted in the probe, which resulted in sealed indictments being handed up last week by a Greene County Grand Jury.
Many of the defendants in the case are still being sought by authorities.
Mills said that the individuals charged in connection with the scheme are criminally responsible for playing some role in it.
Patty Jo Cogdill-Good, 45, of 450 Clear Creek Road, Chuckey, was indicted on a charge of theft of property valued at more than $60,000. She was arrested Tuesday on a capias presentment, according to documents.
Bond was set at $100,000, with a Greene County Criminal Court arraignment date set for March 31.
Cogdill-Good, a former Farmers Mutual employee, is free on bond. She is the daughter-in-law of Willie Good, secretary/treasurer of the Greene County Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Co.
Willie Good, a longtime former Greene County commissioner and a widely known figure in the county, is not charged in connection with the scheme and is not involved in the investigation, Mills said.
Cogdill-Good's indictment alleged that between March and December 2012, she committed theft of property over $60,000 "by being a party principal, by knowingly taking, or exercising control over, money belonging to the Greene County Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Company" without the owners' consent.
Also charged in connection with the case is James David Carlyle, 52.
Carlyle was indicted on a charge of theft of property valued over $10,000. He was taken into custody Tuesday on a capias presentment.
Bond for Carlyle was set at $30,000, with a Criminal Court arraignment date of March 31. Carlyle is free on bond.
Mills said that one or more defendants prepared checks that were received by others who were not customers or otherwise associated with the company.
Those individuals then cashed the checks at a local bank, Mills said.
Most, if not all, of the defendants in the case are from Greene County, Mills said.
Telephone messages this morning to the company's Greeneville office were not immediately returned.