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Significant Problems with Clark County Courts Office


The First Judicial District in Clark County has received the lowest possible rating from the Missouri State Auditor.

The 24-page audit was released to the public Tuesday morning.  You can read it here.

The audit got underway about this time last year, following the suspension and resignation of Circuit Clerk Mary Jones over possible financial improprieties in her office.

The investigation focused primarily on the office's activities from January 1, 2012 through July 31, 2013.

It found the office misappropriated court funds, did not comply with court rules, and did not have proper financial checks and balances in place.

For example, nearly $4,000 in court-related fees were collected but never deposited and another $8,000 in fees were not collected.

The discrepancies date back to 2001.

The audit also found Jones changed the status of six legal cases involving family members to “exempt from collection” or “uncollectible” without court approval.

The First Judicial Circuit said it’s implementing the recommendations listed in the audit.

Jones was arrested last month after a state investigation.  She’s charged with two counts of felony stealing.

Jason Parrott is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.