A former Allendale bank teller will spend five years in jail after she admitted trying to burn down a bank to destroy evidence of her embezzling.
40-year-old April Adams was sentenced in federal court for embezzling over $330,000 from the Allendale County Bank. Adams reportedly told investigators that she would usually “grab a handful” of bills on her way out of the bank at day’s end. She also pled guilty on charges that she attempted to set fire to the bank and burn it down.
District Judge Margaret B. Seymour sentenced Adams to 60 months in prison, followed by five years of supervised release. She will also be required to repay the money to the bank.
Adams had previously admitted that she stole the money from the Allendale County Bank between May and June 2011 while employed as a teller. Bank officials learned of the problem after its president went through the drive-through and noticed a sign stating that the bank could not cash checks due to lack of funds. The president learned from other employees that Adams had told them to put up the sign.
Once the bank started an internal investigation, prosecutors say Adams tried to burn the bank vault and its contents in an attempt to destroy evidence of her theft.
Security footage showed her entering the bank while it was closed on a June 2011 weekend. The next week, other employees realized that someone had started a fire inside the vault. Prosecutors say Adams also set fire to land behind the bank.
Matt Long contributed to this report