SHELBYVILLE - A woman whose job was to make sure sex offenders in Bedford County are properly registered and monitored is accused of stealing more $30,000 in fees paid by those sex offenders.
Rebecca Hord, 58, was arrested Monday following a grand jury indictment charging her theft, forgery and official misconduct.
Under Tennessee law, convicted sex offenders are required to register with local law enforcement agencies and also report any changes of address. The information provided through that process is maintained on a statewide database of sex offenders.
To cover the administrative expenses required to maintain the database, each sex offender is required to pay an annual fee of $150.
- An annual extortion fee?
A portion of the collected fees are used by the local law enforcement agencies, while the rest are forwarded to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.
Hord's alleged theft occurred over a six-year period. During that time, investigators determined that at least 158 sex offenders in Bedford County should have paid fees totaling $42,198.
Hord, however, only turned over $10,738 to the sheriff's department, keeping at least $31,460 for herself.
Because of incomplete recordkeeping, investigators say the total number of offenders and the amount of missing fees could actually have been higher.
Hord is out of jail on bond.