Woman accused of stealing more than $68,000 from Frazee VFW

Published: Jun. 1, 2023 at 1:34 PM CDT
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FRAZEE, Minn. (Valley News Live) - A woman who was the manager at the Frazee VFW is charged with four felonies and a gross misdemeanor for allegedly stealing tens of thousands of dollars from the establishment and a scholarship fund.

On March 5, 2022, the Frazee Police Department received a report of the theft of $510 cash at the VFW. Because of the missing cash and financial problems the VFW was experiencing, an audit was conducted. The audit showed that from March 2021 through February 2022 a total of $68,666.25 in cash was missing from the VFW’s bank deposits.

Frazee Police officers investigated the missing money and Anne Omundson is now charged in Becker County Court with felony theft, two counts of felony theft by swindle, false representation of unemployment benefits, and a gross misdemeanor of gambling fraud.

Omundson was scheduled to appear in court on Thursday, June 1, 2023, but Minnesota court records say she didn’t show up. A bench warrant is now issued for her arrest.

Court documents say Omundson was the manager at the VFW from approximately 2019 through February 2022 and responsible for making sure all deposits were made each night at the end of shift. Investigators say cash deposits were not made for many days and sometimes weeks. According to those familiar with the VFW and video surveillance, Omundson was the only person to handle the money at the VFW.

A worker noticed the till was short money on more than one occasion, and says when they brought it up to Omundson, she said she would take it out of her own pocket, according to court documents. Investigators also say the money started going missing from the VFW around the same time period to when defendant stopped receiving unemployment cash benefits.

Court documents also accuse Omundson of playing e-tabs after hours, which is not allowed. The gaming logs from Electronic Game Solutions show that Omundson spent $20,099.75 playing the e-tabs from 1:00 a.m. to 3:00 a.m. over a ten-month period.

Omundson’s gambling fraud charge stems from her allegedly using another person’s name to cash in pull-tab winnings three times. Omundson said a friend let her use her name when she won on the pull tabs. The person told police that she did not give anyone permission to use her personal information and that defendant would have had access to her personal information when defendant worked at the VFW. court documents say Omundson received $800 using someone else’s name.

The VFW had a separate scholarship fund bank account. In July 2021, the balance was $6,322. On September 16, 30 and October 28, 2021, a total of $6,250 was electronically withdrawn from the scholarship bank account and deposited into the VFW’s bank account for the bar. Court documents explain that the bar bank account was used by Omundson to run the bar business.

Investigators say Omundson was not authorized to withdraw money from the scholarship back account and no one was authorized to transfer funds to the VFW bar account, adding she had access to the online scholarship bank account and was the only person who could have taken the funds out. The two other people who were authorized to transfer funds in bank accounts were both were interviewed and stated they did not authorize any transfer from the scholarship fund bank account.

Omundson is also accused of unemployment fraud. An agent with the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension says January 3 through March 7, 2021, Omundson received a total of $6,850 in unemployment benefits. VFW payroll records show she worked 70 hours a pay period and received a total of $5,219.90 during that same time frame. Police say she did not report any hours or income earned as required when she filled out the weekly questionnaire for unemployment benefits.