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Berrien County employee charged with embezzlement

Police say the 59-year-old government employee used county funds to buy materials for personal home improvement jobs.
Employees return to Berrien County Courthouse

ST. JOSEPH, Mich — A county employee in charge of maintaining county grounds and buildings has been charged with embezzlement. 

Berrien County authorities allege 59-year-old Berrien County Building and Grounds Superintendent Joel Todd Johnson used county funds to buy materials and tools for personal home construction and home improvement jobs.

The embezzlement allegedly happened from February and August. The total cost alleged to have been purchased ranged between $1,000 and $20,000. 

He was arraigned on Friday and will have a preliminary next month. He faces up to five years in prison. 

He's been placed on unpaid administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation.  

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