RITBA employee inflated her vacation time, charged with fraud

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. (WPRI) — A Portsmouth woman has been arrested and fired from her job at the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority (RITBA) for falsifying employee records, making it look like she was entitled to more paid vacation time than she deserved.

Barbara X. Donnelly, 39, was arrested by Rhode Island State Police troopers on Friday, January 22, at her Middle Road home, after the state police said a complaint was filed by the authority with the state’s Financial Crimes Unit. She was charged with larceny over $1,500, later arraigned and released on $1,000 personal recognizance.

RITBA did not name the woman in a statement, but said the discrepancy was found during a routine review of financial and personnel records.

The amount was “less than $5,000 but an ongoing, full investigation will determine the final exact amount,” the authority said. They anticipate all the money taken in the process will be returned.

The agency is instituting new checks and balances on vacation time to prevent the situation from recurring.

“No customer E-ZPass accounts were affected as this incident solely involved internal RITBA operating funds,” the authority said.

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