A 39-year-old Greencastle woman, accused of writing bogus checks totaling nearly $6,000 from her former employer's account, faces an Aug. 9 hearing in Putnam Circuit Court.
Bambi Bicknell, a former employee of Mama Nunz, is facing theft and forgery charges for allegedly stealing checks from the business and forging the name of owner Jo Ruth Cancilla in order to cash them at various check-cashing locations.
According to a Greencastle Police Department report, the incidents occurred between April 11 and May 30 this year.
Bicknell allegedly wrote 22 checks totaling $5,816.55 over that period.
Det. Randy Seipel's report indicated "more checks may yet come back ... because it is unclear how many checks she actually stole from the Cancillas."
During Bicknell's initial hearing Thursday before Special Judge Thomas Milligan in Putnam Circuit Court, a not-guilty plea was entered on her behalf and local attorney Sid Tongret appointed to represent her.
Bicknell asked the judge that she be allowed to be released on home detention since she has pending employment opportunities. However, Putnam County Prosecutor Tim Bookwalter asked that the customary $20,000 bond (with 10 percent allowed) be imposed.
That was the case at the end of Bicknell's hearing, although Judge Milligan did say he would allow her to be screened for possible home detention, which would allow the court to re-examine the possibility at a later date.
The alleged criminal activity first came to light when Nunzio Cancilla, the son of Jo Ruth Cancilla and owner of the Mama Nunz restaurant at 800 S. Main St., Greencastle, flagged down GPD Officer Eric Vaughan at about 8 p.m. May 30.
Cancilla showed Vaughan checks with his mother's real signature and the apparently forged signature, telling the officer he believed one of his employees had been cashing fraudulent checks.
Charges of theft and forgery were filed against Bicknell on June 18 in Putnam Circuit Court.
Meanwhile, also making a brief court appearance Thursday was Kimberly A. Wright, 46, Cloverdale, who is alleged to have taken an estimated $38,121.85 from the Stardust Hill Owners Association and Cloverdale Main Street organization.
Wright faces two counts of Class D felony theft.
The alleged thefts occurred sometime during the period of January 2009 to March 2012. Wright served as office manager from February 2006 until mid-February 2012. The dates of her tenure as Cloverdale Main Street treasurer are unknown.
Wright, who is also represented by the court-appointed Tongret, had her trial date set for 8:30 a.m. Aug. 15 in Putnam Circuit Court.