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Court to hear DSS embezzlement case

A 25-year employee of Pulaski County Department of Social Services is slated for a preliminary hearing on an embezzlement charge next week.
According to court records, Brenda Carolyn Thomas, 63, of Chestnut Ridge Road in Pulaski will appear in Pulaski County General District Court Tuesday, Nov. 9 at 1 p.m.
Thomas was charged in September with a single count of misusing or misappropriating funds from DSS through her capacity as a public official. However, according to a public information office for Virginia State Police, Thomas is alleged to have “misused or misappropriated” equipment having a value of about $250. No actual money was involved.
Thomas was released from custody on personal recognizance pending her court appearance.
The charge is a Class 4 felony, carrying a sentence of two to 10 years in prison and a fine up to $100,000.
The purpose of a preliminary hearing is to determine whether enough evidence exists to advance the case to a grand jury for possible indictment in circuit court.
General District Court Judge Glenwood Lookabill has withdrawn from hearing the case due to having served on the DSS advisory board for a number of years, court records show.

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