A Michigan teacher has gotten in trouble with the law after it was discovered she spent $31 000 of school money on gambling. The teacher reportedly spent the money on penny slot games at MGM Grand Detroit Casino. However, now that her crime has been revealed, she faces up to ten years in jail.
Teacher Uses School Money for Slot Machines
The teacher, Lydia Christine Johnson, is a 29-year old who taught maths and Spanish at Dakota High School in Macomb, Detroit. She has been charged with one count of embezzling funds from a non-profit organization.
Besides being a teacher, Johnson was also the coordinator of student activities. This meant that she was responsible for collecting money for school events. These included things like the homecoming dance, field trips, or camping trips.
The homecoming dance should have seen the school receive $30 000. However, just $11 000 was deposited. A popular camping trip to Canada should have received $13 000, but the school received just $500.
Johnson Clearly Suffers From Gambling Addiction
The school became aware of the problems when the Canadian camp contacted the school. The camp had tried several times to collect the money owed to them by Johnson, but without success. The camp soon contacted the school directly, who questioned the teacher. When she was evasive, they contacted the Macomb County Sheriff’s Department.
After searching her classroom, police discovered cash deposit envelops for the homecoming dance that had been opened. They also found receipts for MGM Grand Detroit, where Johnson apparently spent over $90 000 in 2016 on various casino games, including slot machines.
Naturally, the school is shocked and hurt by this betrayal. Johnson held a position of trust within the school, and she abused it. The prosecution has said that these sorts of crimes are often committed for one of two things, gambling or drug addiction.
Gambling addiction is a serious problem. If you or someone you know is suffering from a gambling addiction, please seek professional help immediately. While gambling can be fun and a great way to win some money, it’s not worth ruining your life. Avid online gamblers who believe they may have a problem should really look in to self-exclusion options.