Girl Scout troop leader indicted for allegedly stealing $12,500 from cookie sales, event fees

Jill Gauthier was "literally caught with her hand in the cookie jar," according to the Ohio attorney general

A Girl Scout troop leader from Ohio has been indicted for her alleged role in pocketing money from cookie sales and event fees

News of the indictment comes straight from the office of Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost, who claimed that Jill Gauthier, of Pataskala, deserved an "adult-size timeout" for her alleged role in the theft.

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Gauthier, 49, is said to have transferred $12,500 into her personal bank accounts in a span of about five years, according to an investigation conducted by the Yost Charitable Law Section and the Pataskala Police Department. 

The money was reportedly collected from parents of Girl Scout troop members. 

Investigators were alerted to the potential embezzlement when parents expressed their concern to law enforcement officials. The news release alleges Gauthier used the pocketed funds for personal purchases. 

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"She was literally caught with her hand in the cookie jar," Yost said in a public statement. "How many boxes of Thin Mints will her troop need to sell to make up for her betrayal?" 

Court filings from Licking County Common Pleas show Gauthier was charged with theft and a fourth-degree felony on Thursday, Feb. 11.  An initial bond hearing took place on Tuesday, March 2, and a Licking County grand jury "recently indicted" Gauthier on both charges.

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Gauthier’s arraignment is currently scheduled for May. 

Jill Gauthier, a Girl Scout troop leader from Ohio has been indicted for her alleged role in pocketing money from cookie sales and event fees, says Attorney General Dave Yost. (iStock)

Jill Gauthier, a Girl Scout troop leader from Ohio has been indicted for her alleged role in pocketing money from cookie sales and event fees, says Attorney General Dave Yost. (iStock)

Meanwhile, Girl Scouts of the USA told Fox News the organization high standards for its troop leaders. 

"Girl Scouts of the USA and our Girl Scout Councils expect the highest standards of conduct from our volunteers, in keeping with our mission, our values, and our Girl Scout Promise and Laws," a spokesperson for Girl Scouts of the USA wrote via email. "Our focus now is helping our girls to move forward with their cookie season and the continuation of their Girl Scout journey building leadership skills that will give them the courage, confidence, and character to make the world a better place."  

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Membership fees for Girl Scouts starts at $25, according to an FAQ section of its website. Additional program fees may be collected depending on the activities a Girl Scout signs up for. 

The nonprofit youth organization’s famous cookie program allows 100% of raised net revenue to stay within local councils and troops, which have the option to use the earned money for projects and charities.