Cotto accused of taking $6,356 from league account

A New Bern woman has been charged with embezzling money from the Havelock Pop Warner league.

Jessica Ann Cotto, 30, of New Bern, faces a felony charge of embezzlement of $6,356 from the Havelock Pop Warner Youth Football and Cheer Association, according to Havelock Police Chief David Magnusson.

Magnusson said the president of the league filed a police report about the missing money in July. He said the league’s investigation revealed that money had been taken from the group’s checking account beginning in late 2014.

“This was based on an audit that they did on their own and they were able to determine when these acts started and when they stopped,” Magnusson said.

The police investigation into the thefts pinpointed Cotto as the suspect in the case, Magnusson said.

“It turned out that there were some unauthorized credit card uses, some ATM withdrawals and some checks that were located and obviously used to come up with the embezzlement,” Magnusson said.

He said Cotto cooperated with authorities during the investigation and agreed to meet with detectives Friday at the magistrate’s office in Havelock, where she was charged.

“My understanding was that she was the treasurer and she had access to these funds, but I do not know what these funds were earmarked for,” Magnusson said. “Obviously, it is for the running of the program.”