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Dauphin County woman accused of stealing almost $38,500 from youth football organization

ELIZABETHVILLE, Dauphin County — A teacher within the Upper Dauphin Area School District is accused of stealing nearly $38,500 from a youth football organization over a four-year period while she served as treasurer, according to a criminal complaint filed by Dauphin County criminal investigators.

Julie Ann Rupp, 47, of the 3900 block of Route 209 in Elizabethville, is charged with one count of theft by unlawful taking, a third-degree felony, the criminal complaint says. She was arrested Wednesday and released on her own recognizance, according to court documents.

Her formal arraignment is scheduled for July 6.

The Upper Dauphin Area School District issued this statement:

“The Upper Dauphin Area School District was made aware today of criminal charges filed against one of its teachers, Julie Ann Rupp.  Ms. Rupp was charged with theft by unlawful taking, and the complaint alleges that she unlawfully took money from the Lykens Little Tigers Booster Club.  The School District is deeply troubled by these allegations, and will begin its own investigation of this matter.  In the meantime, the School District intends to immediately address Ms. Rupp’s continued employment status with the School District based upon these allegations of criminal conduct.  The School District does not condone the theft any of funds, but most especially booster club funds which were donated and/or raised to support athletic activities for our local school-aged children.  The School District will not have any further comment regarding this matter at this time, but may provide updates to the public in the future based upon developments in its own investigation.”

According to the criminal complaint, Rupp was appointed treasurer of Lykens Little Tigers LLC, a Dauphin County youth football organization, in September of 2014. Her name as added to the organization’s Mid Penn Bank account, and the account’s mailing address for statements was changed to Rupp’s home address.

As treasurer, Rupp’s duties included paying invoices, collecting registration fees for players, and making deposits after fundraising events and concession stand revenues, the criminal complaint says. She was also required to provide reports to the organization’s Board of Directors at monthly meetings, where the previous month’s profits and expenses were detailed. Rupp told investigators she was solely responsible for the organization’s account, the criminal complaint says.

In January, the organization’s board began receiving notice that previous invoices from 2015 and 2016 were still outstanding. The board’s new president and other members told police they tried several times to have their names added to the organization’s bank account, but Rupp repeatedly failed to show up for appointments made for that purpose.

In March, the board’s president was able to access the account, and discovered that its balance was listed at $15.36, according to the criminal complaint. An investigation of the account showed that Rupp was not depositing all the funds she collected as treasurer. It also showed that she used the account to pay her bills for her personal accounts with AllState, Verizon, and PPL, the criminal complaint says.

She also allegedly used some of the organization’s funds to buy apparel for the Upper Dauphin Wrestling Mat Club, according to the criminal complaint.

A review of the account showed that Rupp allegedly shorted the organization $3,861.63 during her time as treasurer in 2014. She allegedly used $1,904.47 from the organization’s debit card to pay for her own expenses and was short $11,467.30 in deposits in 2015, the criminal complaint says. In 2016, she was allegedly short $10,339.15 in deposits to the account, and was 4,555.50 short in 2017, according to the criminal complaint.

Rupp allegedly admitted to falsifying her treasurer reports to make it appear the account had more money than it did, according to the criminal complaint. She also admitted that she didn’t make all the deposits, and used some of the account’s funds for personal use, police say.

In all, Rupp took $38,437.92 from the account over four years, according to police.