Deputies Arrest Woman for Embezzling from Local Church


Date:  10/16/2013

San Juan County, NM - On Friday, October 4th deputies of the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched the New Life Worship Church in Farmington, NM.  They were asked to contact the senior pastor there in reference to embezzlement from the institution.  Deputies learned that 66 year-old Anita Johnston of Aztec, the woman contracted to do the book keeping services, had embezzled approximately $80,000 since 2006.

Anita JohnstonThe Sheriff’s Office’s Financial Crimes Detective continued the investigation and learned Johnston had previously pled guilty to Fraud in 2002, Embezzlement in 2002, and Embezzlement in 2010.  On Tuesday, October 15th detectives secured and executed a search warrant at Johnston’s home office in Aztec and seized documents supporting the current case.  Johnston was present and admitted to the crime, stating she “has no excuse for what she did”.

Johnston was arrested and booked into the San Juan County Detention Center on the charge of Embezzlement over $20,000; a 2nd degree felony.  She is being held on a $30,000 cash bond.