County Clerk Deputy Arrest Leads to Audit

By: Stephanie Ando Email
By: Stephanie Ando Email

The Brazos County Auditor’s Office is conducting a full audit of the County Clerk’s office, according to County Auditor Katie Conner.

Conner says the audit started as soon as Clerk Deputy Jaime Hines was arrested for stealing thousands of dollars of marriage license money.

The Auditor’s Office decides which Brazos County Offices to audit based on risk level. Conner says the County Clerk's office is now considered extremely risky.

“Today is a one, on a scale of one to five. One being the highest,” said Conner.

Conner says the last time the clerk's office was audited was in 2008. Investigators believe Jaime Hines started pocketing cash in 2009.

Investigators say Hines didn't give people receipts, so it was harder to tell that money was missing. Conner says anyone who does business with the county should receive a receipt.

Now, all marriage applications will have numbers that match up with receipts. However, this scandal could affect security measures in offices across the county.

County Judge Duane Peters says cameras could be installed in offices that deal with money transactions in the near future.

“If that person that's taking the money knows there's somebody watching them. They're less likely to pocket the money,” said Judge Peters.

Conner says it will be years before the County Clerk's Office is considered lower risk again.

Hines worked for Brazos County for more than 12 years. She bonded out of jail on $5,000.


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