Former Clark County Auditor’s Office employee pleads not guilty to theft in office

A former employee of the Clark County Auditor’s Office pleaded not guilty to a charge of theft in office on Friday.

Robert Vanderhorst, 63, was arraigned in Clark County Common Pleas Court on Friday morning. He was released on his own recognizance.

Vanderhorst faces a third-degree felony charge of theft in office, meaning the value of property or services allegedly stolen is more than $7,500 and less than $150,000.

“Vanderhorst appears to have used his intimate knowledge, tenure, and trust to steal from our office,” Clark County Auditor John Federer said.

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An employee of the Clark County Auditor’s Office since 1991, Vanderhorst was fired Jan. 12 after the Clark County Auditor’s Office said it learned of the allegations.

Federer said that Vanderhorst’s charge represents a “shocking betrayal of every Clark County citizen” and employees of his office.

According to the auditor’s office, an employee noticed inappropriate vendor payouts in the financial management system in October 2021. State investigators visited the auditor’s office and Vanderhorst’s home last month to collect evidence.

Ohio Auditor Keith Faber’s Special Investigations Unit is conducting a forensic audit and criminal investigation in conjunction with Clark County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Driscoll. The investigation is ongoing.

Federer created a website, www.clarkcountyfacts.com, with the help of a communications consulting firm that he said has been paid out of his own pocket to outline details about the alleged theft.

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