Updated: 02/24/2014 3:47 PM
Created: 02/24/2014 3:44 PM WDIO.com
A former Hermantown school board member has been charged with felony theft for allegedly stealing $5,000 cash and $16,500 worth of diamonds.
Police say an investigation into 42-year-old Stephanie Hamell began in December after a victim reported that they had asked Hamell to hold onto her belongings in a safe.
When the victim later tried to reclaim the belongings, Hamell told her the safe was locked and needed to be sent to a safe company to open.
According to police, Hamell told the victim that the cash in the safe did not return from the company, but the jewelry did.
The victim reported having her rings inspected by a jeweler who told her that the diamonds had been replaced by crystal.
Authorities say Hamell confessed to detectives that she did not send the safe away, and stole the cash and diamonds.
Hamell was charged on February 14th with one count of felony theft.
She will appear in court again March 11th.
Hermantown Superintendent Brad Johnson says that Hamell tendered her resignation, effective immediately, on February 8th.
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