Hockey mom behind bars for embezzling half-a-million from hockey association

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By Natalie Rivers By Natalie Rivers

PHOENIX - The Phoenix police arrested a hockey mom for allegedly embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars from the Arizona High School Hockey Association.

The AHSHA is a non-profit organization that provides hockey services to Arizona youth. All the employees are volunteers.

According to police in 2003, Mary Williams had a son playing hockey with AHSHA and so she volunteered to be the acting Treasury for the association.

Williams had bookkeeping knowledge from her job as an assistant comptroller for a private golf club.

The Phoenix police were alerted that Williams was stealing money from the association on February 27, 2010.

During their investigation police found Williams began embezzling money from AHSHA in 2005 and continued for the next five years until she was removed from her position in early 2010.

The theft involved issuing checks to herself and to personal debtors, making electronic payments from the association's bank account, using the association's debit card for personal purchases and even forging documents to get a $75,000 load in AHSHA's name.

Creditors actually brought the embezzlement to the attention of the association.

Phoenix police said evidence indicated the suspect embezzled at least $500,000 from the association. There could be more money that is uncovered in the continuing investigation.

Phoenix police suspect Williams might also have embezzled money from her current employer as well.

Williams was arrested Tuesday afternoon and was booked into jail on charges of theft, fraud and forgery.

A benefit concert is taking place on August 14 at 8 p.m. at the Old Brass Rail on 38th Street and Thomas Road. Wilson Kozac classical rock duo will be performing and  a top jar will take donations for the AHSHA.