MIDDLEBURY — A Shipshewana woman is accused of stealing over $100,000 worth of lottery tickets from the gas station where she worked.
Joehanna Marchand, 33, is charged with two counts of theft each valued at more than $50,000. The Level 5 felony carries a punishment of up to six years in prison.
She was charged in court documents filed Monday, following an investigation by Middlebury police into a theft report first made in February. Police believe Marchand had been stealing packs of tickets since last spring.
According to court documents:
The Middlebury Police Department received a report of theft from the BP CornerMart on Feb. 7, stating that Marchand had been stealing lotto tickets. The store employee said he contacted a Hoosier Lottery investigator, who told him to review his security tapes.
Marchand can be seen on the recording activating a pack of scratch-off tickets, according to the police report. She then lays the pack on some paperwork, heads back to the office and hides them under her sweatshirt without paying for them.
Officers then interviewed Marchand, who said she isn’t supposed to buy tickets at the store where she works. She said she splits up the transaction by activating the pack, then comes back later and pays for them.
However, she couldn’t provide police with any receipts from the alleged purchases.
Lotto ticket records were reviewed and it was found that 145 packs of tickets had been activated at the convenience store between May 10, 2019, and Feb. 2, at times when Marchand was working. An internal review showed that entire packs of tickets had been activated, billed and paid for to the Hoosier Lottery, but weren’t sold at the store.
This created a significant loss, since the store had paid $104,850 for the 145 unaccounted-for packs of tickets. The Hoosier Lottery calculated the winning value of the tickets at a total of $75,010.
Further security tapes were reviewed and showed Marchand activating packs of tickets without paying for them on Jan. 23 and 28 and on Feb. 1 and 2. A co-worker also alleged that he had seen her take a $750 pack of tickets and put them in her purse, and that she told him she had already paid for them.