Columbus -- St. Jerome Catholic Church, in Columbus, WI and the Diocese of Madison offer the following brief statement, regarding formal charges being filed against a former parish employee:
Background: An audit of St. Jerome’s financial records was conducted and some suspicious transactions were discovered. After consultation with the Diocese of Madison, the parish contacted the Columbus Police Department and asked that they look into the matter. The police investigation uncovered an alleged significant misappropriation of funds by a former parish employee and an arrest was made on November 10, 2011.
Today, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced that Mrs. Susan Droessler, of Columbus, has been charged with one count of felony theft. The full release regarding the State of Wisconsin’s charge against Mrs. Droessler, as well as the criminal complaint filed against her, are available on the Wisconsin Department of Justice’s website (here).
As a matter of prudent policy, the Diocese of Madison and the staff of St. Jerome, Columbus respectfully withhold further comment regarding this matter, at this time. We must allow the legal process to run its course, without additional commentary and without interference. And as the Justice Department’s release reminds us, in a court of law, “a defendant enjoys a presumption of innocence” until proven otherwise.
Parish and diocesan representatives have cooperated with, and been in frequent communication with, law enforcement officials regarding this matter, since last year.
We ask everyone to please keep the St. Jerome Catholic Church and School communities in your prayers, as well as Mrs. Susan Droessler and her family, during the difficult days ahead.