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Christensen gets probation for stealing from Elkhorn arts program

katrina christensen sentencing elkhorn embezzle arts
Posted at 5:54 PM, Feb 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-20 20:17:06-05

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) --  — The former treasurer of a program that helps show choir and drama at Elkhorn High School is punished for stealing from them.

Katrina Christensen is sentenced to 5 years probation and told to pay $20,000 in restitution by Douglas County District Court Judge Gary Randall.

Christensen embezzled about $116,000 from Partners and Parents for the Arts. It’s a program that supports fine arts at Elkhorn High School including show choir, speech, and drama. The program said they didn’t realize she maxed out their credit and took loans out in their name until it was too late. Prosecutors say she used it on personal things.

"These kids are really special. This summer 30 of them decided to have a car wash on a Saturday to try and get some money back for our group. Even though they didn't replenish 1% of what she took they wanted to start somewhere," said Sherry Georgi with Partners and Parents for the Arts.

Christensen’s attorney said she offered to pay back all the money before she was charged, but says they declined. He also argued she doesn’t have a criminal history.

"I broke a trust bestowed on me. It deeply hurt the students, parents, teachers, and a program that relied on me that I believed in. I take full responsibility for my actions. There are no excuses or justification for stealing,” Christensen said.

Judge Gary Randall said he can’t undo the crime and if Christensen went to prison, she wouldn’t be able to pay restitution, so this allows the organization to recoup some of the money.

She will pay $300 a month.