The former house director for a sorority near the UW-Madison campus was charged this week with embezzling more than $225,000 from the sorority over a period of more than six years.
Police issued an arrest warrant Wednesday for Pamela A. Dorton, 61, of La Crosse, after a criminal complaint charged her with two counts of theft greater than $10,000 and three counts of fraudulent writings.
Dorton was fired from her job as house director at Delta Delta Delta sorority, 120 Langdon St., in early 2016. Student officers of the house came to believe that Dorton had been embezzling from the sorority by making unauthorized purchases on its Sam’s Club credit card, according to the complaint, filed in Dane County Circuit Court.
Dorton had been house director at the sorority since 2008, taking care of such things as ordering food, planning meals and overseeing property management and maintenance. The sorority had last heard from Dorton in January 2016, when she emailed to say she was in Michigan and would be unable to return after the winter break move-in, the complaint states. That violated terms of her contract, the complaint states.
According to the complaint:
Suspicion arose, police were told, after Dorton’s departure when the sorority received statements from Sam’s Club that were different from the ones it had been receiving and reviewing with Dorton. Purchases on the new statements, sorority officers told police, were itemized, while the statements submitted by Dorton simply had broad categories of items such as “groceries.” Dorton’s statements, police found, were forged.
Sorority officers also noticed there were purchases of gift cards listed on the invoices, which the sorority never bought, totaling $8,000.
Madison police Detective Sarah Korger, who was assigned to the case in March 2016, was contacted in October 2016 by the Michigan Department of Treasury and a Sigma Kappa sorority chapter in Rhode Island, which were both trying to find Dorton.
Delta Delta Delta sorority hired an accounting firm to go through all of the Sam’s Club invoices and to flag suspicious spending by Dorton, which included purchases of such things as televisions, DVDs, tires, clothing and bedding.
They found that credit card fraud losses from March 2009 to June 2013 were $69,735 and were $156,296 from July 2013 to January 2016, totaling $226,031.
Korger tried on several occasions to reach Dorton by phone and email but never received an answer.