Kristen Reczek Side.jpg

GRIFFITH — A teacher at Beiriger Elementary School faces a felony charge alleging she stole more than $19,000 from the school's Parent/Teacher Council.

Kristen G. Reczek, 34, of Crown Point, is accused of using the council's Centier Bank debit card to make unauthorized purchases and make 32 ATM withdrawals between May 21 and Oct. 10, according to Lake Criminal Court records.

The school's principal and current president of the council brought the alleged theft to the attention of law enforcement, court records said. The council president and principal told police Reczek was the only person who had the debit card for the council's account.

Reczek allegedly told the council president and principal she did not steal any money from the account. Video surveillance images from multiple ATM locations showed Reczek making withdrawals, court records said.

Reczek is accused of trying to conceal the amount of stolen money by submitting falsified treasury reports to the Parent/Teacher Council's leadership. The council operates separately from the school.

George Jerome, director of finance and operations for Griffith Public Schools, said Tuesday he could not comment at this time. 

A Griffith police detective attempted to reach out to Reczek, and she told him she would get back to him with an attorney, police Cmdr. Keith Martin said. Police have not spoken with her since then, he said.

Lake Criminal Court records show Reczek was released from custody after posting bond Tuesday.

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Public safety reporter

Sarah covers crime, federal courts and breaking news for The Times. She joined the paper in 2004 after graduating from Purdue University Calumet.