Vault manager embezzled over $120K by stuffing cash into her purse in Texas, feds say

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A vault manager working at a Texas bank embezzled more than $120,000 by stuffing cash into her purse or pocket, according to federal authorities.

She was caught after the bank conducted a count of the money in the vault in May 2021 and noticed thousands were missing, officials said.

Now Sallie Lazzaro, aka Sallie Marie Perry, has pleaded guilty to theft by a bank employee in the Northern District of Texas, according to a Dec. 6 news release.

Her defense attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment from McClatchy News on Dec. 7.

Lazzaro began working for Comerica Bank in July 2015 as a teller at its Arlington branch, then was promoted to a vault manager, authorities said in court records. As the vault manager, she “was tasked with overseeing the operation and funds of the bank vault.”

Starting around January 2020, authorities said Lazzaro began stealing money from her teller drawer and hiding the cash in her purse or pocket.

She would then input false information into the bank computer system — including by manually manipulating the teller drawer balances and creating fake vault records — to hide what she took, according to court records.

The bank’s count of the vault in May 2021 found there was about $265,508 missing, officials said, and Lazzaro admits stealing about $120,000.

A spokesperson with Comerica told McClatchy News the bank does not comment on judicial proceedings.

Lazzaro faces up to 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine, according to her plea agreement. Her sentencing is scheduled for March 30.

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