Former Malheur County employee charged with stealing office cash

VALE – A long-time employee of the Malheur County Planning Department has been charged with theft and official misconduct, accused of stealing an estimated $2,250 in cash.

Jamie L. Willet, 50, of Fruitland, faces four counts of second-degree theft and four counts of official misconduct. The charges are misdemeanors punishable by up to a year in jail and fines. Malheur County District Attorney Dave Goldthorpe charged her in a criminal information filed in Malheur County Circuit Court on Wednesday, April 10.

Willet, paid $4,472 a month, had been the county’s assistant planning director since 2015 and was the interim planning director last summer. The new director, Eric Evans, triggered the investigation when he arrived in late August and discovered a cash shortage, according to the affidavit of Det. Ryan Mills of the Oregon State Police.

An audit . . .