Former Moniteau County Assessor Amanda Trimble has been charged following the criminal investigation that led to her resignation at the beginning of the year.
Trimble is charged with forgery, stealing $750 or more and filing false documents, all class D felonies; as well as fraudulent use of a credit/debit device, a class A misdemeanor.
Charges were filed in the circuit court of Moniteau County on Thursday.
Investigators found the total amount of county funds taken by Trimble to be at least $4,816.57, according to a probable cause statement submitted by the Missouri Highway Patrol Jan. 29. Of this amount, funds were spent on more than $3,000 in fuel purchases, a trip to Texas and six out-of-town sporting events, all of which were misrepresented as Moniteau County-related expenses.
Document: Amanda Trimble probable cause statementView
In an affidavit, the prosecuting attorney stated Trimble, from April 2018 to October 2019, forged and altered in writing receipts, requests and invoices claiming said documents showed expenses incurred by her and her office for official use but were in fact for her personal use and requests for reimbursement.
Trimble also allegedly filed altered and false documents with the Moniteau County Clerk's Office, using a county credit card and a Petro-Fuel Card issued to the Moniteau County Assessor's Office to obtain gas, airline tickets and other property.
The county credit card was used Oct. 18, 2019, to purchase two American Airlines flight tickets from Columbia Missouri Regional Airport to Dallas/Fort Worth Airport, valued at $446.20, according to the probable cause statement. Trimble allegedly reported to county officials that the trip to Texas was for mapping software training with mapping software ESRI. Trimble also allegedly submitted receipts to the Moniteau County treasurer for personal reimbursement, reportedly incurred during her training trip for Uber rides and registration fees paid to ESRI, totalling $223.16.
Moniteau County officials reported they had located several suspicious papers from a trash can at the Moniteau County Courthouse related to Trimble's October Texas trip. Included in this paperwork was an American Airlines trip confirmation receipt — pieces of blank white paper were taped to it, covering the name of Trimble's sister, who was listed as one of two persons who flew the day of the trip. Also located in the trash can was a generic training from from ESRI, also with blank white paper taped to it, obscuring a total quote for training of $1,950. Printed on another white piece of paper taped to the training registration was typed text stating "Total paid $199.00." When compared to receipts turned in by Trimble, it allegedly was apparent the tape and typed text showing a different total was used to produce a paper made to appear as a receipt with a fictitous charge amount, for which she was seeking reimbursement.
ESRI officials indicated Trimble was not registered to attend any of their trainings and also indicated they did not offer training in the Dallas/Fort Worth area Oct. 18. They also indicated they do not offer training during evenings or weekends, notable because Trimble's flight was scheduled to arrive in Texas the evening of Friday, Oct. 18, 2019.
A review of Trimble's personal Facebook account reportedly revealed posts showing Trimble and her sister in Fort Worth over the weekend celebrating the birthday of a mutual friend. Trimble told investigators several versions of the reason for the trip when questioned, naming different sources and companies she had obtained training from that, when asked to verify her accounts, denied providing training in that area or to Trimble on that date.
The Highway Patrol's investigation revealed 115 fuel purchases made between April 2018 and October 2019, for which no entry in the county fuel log was made. A number of these purchases occurred on weekends or holidays when Trimble would not have worked, and on several dates Trimble obtained fuel twice in one day but only logged one entry. Some purchases were for total gallons exceeding the amount capable of being held by the assessor's assigned vehicle. The total cost of fuel purchases made by Trimble and left unlogged was $3,187.05.
Finally, investigators reported they found six incidents when Trimble either reported incurred expenses on a trip to a meeting with Ameren UE or for training when no meetings or trainings were held during the timeframe she indicated. Instead, checks on Trimble's personal Facebook page reveal posts showing her and her family at competitive sporting competitions and tournaments for family at those times.