Breese woman sentenced to IDOC for theft from Iuka employer

CLINTON COUNTY — A 46-year-old Breese woman has started to serve her 6-year sentence in the Illinois Department of Corrections, after she was sentenced last week in Clinton County Court for stealing more than $145,000 from her Iuka employer.

Laura Koch (Source: IDOC)
Laura Koch
(Source: IDOC)

Laura Koch was convicted of Class 1 felony theft between $100,000 and $500,000. According to court records, between the summer of 2013 and last fall, Koch stole over $145,000 from Baer Heating & Cooling and American Way Storage in Iuka.

Koch wrote herself checks and cashed them at a bank in Breese. Her employer eventually noticed money missing and suspicious activity on their account, and an investigation ensued.

While the victim businesses are in Marion County, the checks were cashed in Clinton County where charges were ultimately filed.

Koch was initially charged with two counts Class 1 felony theft, as well as a lesser charge of Class 2 felony theft, and in a separate but related case Class 4 felony fraudulent use of a credit card.

In July Koch filed an open plea of guilty to one of the Class 1 felony charges, in exchange for the other three charges being dismissed. She also agreed to pay nearly $201,000 in restitution to her victims. A request to delay the sentence 48-hours was denied.