Ex-village leader pleads not guilty to 2 felonies - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Ex-village leader pleads not guilty to 2 felonies

NEILLSVILLE (WAOW) - One of two former leaders of the Village of Curtiss accused of altering minutes of a town board meeting in 2011 to give themselves thousands of dollars in raises has pleaded not guilty.

Former clerk-treasurer Deborah Krauter, 66, entered the plea during an appearance in Clark County Circuit Court on Thursday, according to online court records. No trial date was immediately set.

Krauter and former village president Arlan Hamm, 75, were each charged in March with two felonies - misconduct in office and theft.

Hamm's next court appearance is a preliminary hearing Sept. 22, according to online court records.

Prosecutors say Hamm received more than $15,000 in salary between January 2011 and April 2013 that was not approved by the village board. Krauter was accused of taking a 25-cent an hour raise that was not authorized from October 2011 until she resigned last September, the complaint said.

Krauter covered it up by not bringing vouchers to the meetings and creating other fake documents, while Hamm approved vouchers without following proper village procedures, the complaint said.

Hamm's board-approved salary during that time was $650, the complaint said. Krauter earned $14 an hour with the unauthorized raise, the complaint said.

Krauter told investigators she was "threatened and bullied" by Hamm to do improper things, the complaint said.

Hamm denied threatening and bullying Krauter, the complaint said.

"He stated that he was owed the money when asked why he took unapproved monies from the village. He further explained that he was doing a lot of running around and someone had to do it," the complaint said.

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