WARREN, Mich. – Former Macomb County clerk Karen Spranger has been arraigned on a larceny charge.
Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith said Spranger stole money from a 78-year-old woman. The former county clerk was arrested this week in Warren and was arraigned by video Friday morning.
CHARGED: Former Macomb County Clerk Karen Spranger arraigned in Warren District Court on Larceny charges. Prosecutor says she stole $1,660 from 78-yo woman she was taking care of. #Local4 pic.twitter.com/LuHT1q03hH— «Jason Colthorp» (@JasonColthorp) May 3, 2019
Spranger was released on a $3,000 bond. She remained silent during her arraignment.
Her sister retained an attorney right before court Friday morning. She said Spranger did not know there was a warrant our for her arrest until she was confronted by police officers.
Watch the arraignment here:
Accused of stealing while caring for woman
Police suspected Spranger of stealing money from the woman two months ago, but Smith said he needed time to look at the case. He said he asked to see more of the bank records and surveillance video.
Smith released pictures Wednesday that show Spranger making ATM withdrawals at a Chase Bank. Police said she was using the 78-year-old woman's debit card during the transactions.
In all, Smith said Spranger made eight withdrawals worth $1,660 between Jan. 1 and Jan. 8.
"Today, we charge Karen Spranger with larceny between $1,000 and $20,000, which is a felony," Smith said Wednesday.
Officials said Spranger was taking care of the 78-year-old woman beginning last September. At some point, the woman noticed her debit card was missing and told police Spranger pushed her down in a parking lot when confronted about the card.
Once police got involved, Spranger disappeared, Smith said.
"A lot of this has been frustrating because police have been trying to get in touch with Spranger and left no stone unturned," Smith said. "Of course, we'd like to get her side of things."
Arrest at Tim Hortons
Warren police said Spranger was arrested Thursday at a Tim Hortons restaurant on 12 Mile Road at Mound Road. When officers approached her, she denied any knowledge of the arrest warrant for her, police said.
Full coverage of Karen Spranger
March 13, 2017: Spranger seeks lawyer for court battle with Hackel
June 28, 2017: Spranger's employees working in fear after security removed
Sept. 22, 2017: Spranger accused of moving, hiding computers overnight
Sept. 28, 2017: Judge rules against Spranger in 'toxic work environment' case
Oct. 25, 2017: Spranger caught on video covering up court order
Nov. 9, 2017: Spranger fails to meet judges' backlog deadline
Nov. 21, 2017: Union files motion to hold Spranger in contempt of court
Nov. 29, 2017: Contempt of court hearing held for Spranger
Nov. 30, 2017: Spranger appears before Board of Commissioners
Nov. 30, 2017: Spranger grilled over massive backlog in her office
Dec. 11, 2017: Judge hears arguments on Spranger's firing of employees
Jan. 8, 2018: Spranger puts Macomb County hiring on hold
May 1, 2019: Spranger charged with larceny