Former Calhoun County Chancery Clerk indicted for embezzlement

By Press Release

State Auditor Stacey Pickering announced Wednesday that former Chancery Clerk of Calhoun County and current candidate for Calhoun County Chancery Clerk, Jess Moore, has been indicted on two counts of embezzlement following an investigation by the State Auditor’s Office.

An audit conducted by the State Auditor’s Office uncovered a discrepancy that resulted in an unannounced visit to Calhoun County Chancery Clerk’s Office in March 2011. Special agents with the State Auditor’s Office conducted a cash count of the Land Redemption account as a result of the earlier audit findings.

Special agents concluded $13,894.81 was unaccounted for in the Land Redemption account. Following the cash count, Chancery Clerk Jess Moore repaid $11,826.52 taken from the Chancery Clerk’s office that had not been properly deposited into the Land Redemption account. Moore resigned on March 3, 2011 during an interview with special agents from the State Auditor’s Office.

“Former Chancery Clerk Jess Moore turned himself in this morning to authorities in Calhoun County after being indicted for embezzlement following our investigation,” said State Auditor Stacey Pickering. “Earlier this year in February and March, my office executed 2 unannounced cash counts in Mississippi where we suspected wrong doing, and both resulted in individuals’ removal from office and execution of emergency procedures to ensure taxpayers were protected. This is an example of how the routine audit process can lead to an investigation, and in this case, it resulted in a recovery on behalf of the taxpayers along with criminal charges. District Attorney Ben Creekmore presented this case to a Calhoun County grand jury, and I appreciate him and his staff for their work.”

After the repayment of $11,826.52 in March, Moore owes $11,108.34 which includes the remaining $2,068.29 of principal, $41.37 of interest and $8,998.68 in investigative cost.

Moore qualified to run for re-election to the position of Calhoun County Chancery Clerk prior to his resignation on March 3, 2011 and is unopposed in the November 8 General Election.