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Columbia Central cheer coach indicted on theft, forgery charges

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Posted at 4:32 PM, Mar 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-23 17:32:07-04

COLUMBIA, Tenn. (WTVF) — Columbia Central High School's cheerleading coach was indicted on multiple charges including theft and forgery after an investigation by the Tennessee Comptroller’s Office.

On March 11, Melissa Todd was indicted on one count of theft, one count of forgery, and one count of tampering with or fabricating evidence.

Click here to see the investigative report.

Investigators found that Todd used $905.03 of school funds to pay for her family member to attend a cheer competition in Orlando, Florida. The family member was not an approved assistant or volunteer affiliate of the cheer program, and the family member’s trip was not eligible to be paid with school funds.

Officials said that the cheer team’s records for collections and disbursements were in such disarray that investigators couldn't determine if all cheer funds were accounted for properly.

Part of that was $1,672.74 in cash that was collected during fundraisers or through other sources that couldn't be accounted for.

Todd also allegedly concealed a $44,029.09 debt owed to Varsity Spirit from the school. Officials said Todd received bills for the entire debt by October 2019, but it was not revealed to investigators and school officials until July 2020. Todd could not provide a full accounting for the purchases. Columbia Central has since paid the amount owed to Varsity Spirit.