Bookkeeper charged with stealing $342,000

PORT ROYAL – The former bookkeeper for Darrow Excavating and CEDARROW Farms Inc. is one of four people charged in connection with the embezzlement of an estimated $342,000 from a local businessman over a seven-year period beginning in 2007.

Pennsylvania State Police Lewistown began an investigation after a certified public accountant representing Robert S. Darrow told police an audit of three separate bank accounts revealed a large number of unauthorized checks cashed from Darrow’s accounts.

According to police, the investigation showed that Kimberly M. Hockenberry, 55, unlawfully utilized checks from the accounts of Darrow and Darrow Excavating. Hockenberry provided her daughter, Stacey L. Dunn, 30, access to the accounts of CEDARROW Farms, Darrow’s personal account and the Darrow Excavating account. Hockenberry and Dunn then utilized checks from the three separate accounts to convert funds for their own use, according to court documents.

In addition to the checks made payable to cash, Hockenberry issued unauthorized checks which were made payable to her husband, 52-year-old Edward L. Hockenberry, and Berry Ridge Excavating, a business operated by the Hockenberrys, according to court documents.

Dunn, and/or Kimberly Hockenberry also issued an unauthorized check to Robert L. Slick III, 29, Dunn’s boyfriend, according to police.

All of the defendants were involved, in some part, in a conspiracy to unlawfully obtain funds from one or more of the victim’s accounts and all of the defendants were aware that the funds were unlawfully obtained, according to court documents.

Police said the investigation remains ongoing and the amount taken by the defendants is an estimate, which is expected to rise.

All four defendants were arraigned at Magisterial District Judge Jacqueline Leister’s office and placed in the Mifflin County Correctional Facility in lieu of $100,000 bail each.

Edward and Kimberly Hockenberry have posted bail while Slick and Dunn remain incarcerated, according to online MCCF records.

A preliminary hearing is tentatively scheduled to take place Aug. 21 at Leister’s office in Port Royal.

Kimberly M. Hockenberry is charged with nine felony theft counts including theft by deception, receiving stolen property and forgery.

Hockenberry’s husband is charged with two felony counts of theft by deception.

Dunn and Slick are charged with four and 12 felony theft charges, respectively, including theft by deception, receiving stolen property and forgery.