By Kathi Bliss
The latest chapter in a story about greed and abuse of the public trust unfolded in the Caldwell County Courts this week, according to a statement released on Monday by Caldwell County District Attorney Trey Hicks.
Hicks said Lisa Christine Lopez, 51, entered a plea of guilty for the felony charge of Theft by a Public Servant on Thursday, June 30.
The charges against Lopez, a former employee of the Caldwell County Tax Assessor-Collector’s Office, stem from an investigation last year regarding thousands of dollars missing from the satellite tax office in Luling, where Lopez was stationed. She was indicted on theft charges by a Caldwell County Grand Jury in January.
Under the plea deal, Lopez faces a maximum of 10 years behind bars, and an amount of restitution payments which will be determined by a judge at her sentencing hearing, Hicks’ statement said.
Lopez’s guilty plea was heard on Thursday by visiting judge Hon. Dib Waldrip, from Comal County. The Caldwell County Adult Community Supervision office will prepare a pre-sentencing report, Hicks said, and the sentencing hearing is expected to take place in late August.
Since the investigation, Caldwell County Tax Assessor-Collector Mary Vicky Gonzales briefly closed the Luling office, and has since revised her office’s policies and procedures regarding the funds collected through that office.
Gonzales declined to comment on Tuesday regarding the plea agreement.
To follow this developing story, watch for updates on www.post-register.com.