Grayson registar charged with embezzlement

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By Staff Reports


INDEPENDENCE — Grayson County's voting registrar was arrested Monday and charged with embezzlement and making a false statement to a criminal investigator, a Virginia State Police spokesman said.
Debra Phipps is accused of using a county credit card to make an unauthorized purchase, state police said. The offense allegedly occurred on Dec. 6, 2011, according to court records.
Police said they were contacted by county officials in April about the matter.
“Given that this issue remains a personnel matter, I am unable to comment,” County Administrator Jonathan Sweet said.
After a month-long investigation, a state police investigator served warrants Monday charging Phipps with felony embezzlement of more than $200 — a felony. She also was charged with making a false statement to a criminal investigator — a misdemeanor.
Phipps was released on her own recognizance. An arraignment is scheduled for May 14 in Grayson County District Court.
The Wythe County Commonwealth Attorney's Office is prosecuting the case.
Phipps has worked in the Grayson County Registrar's Office for 17 years and served as general registrar for about 14 years.
She is on paid administrative leave.