Charges Filed Against Former City Of Golden Valley Employee
June 22, 2011
A former City of Golden Valley Motor Vehicle Licensing employee was charged today by the Hennepin County Attorney with three felonies, including theft by swindle, theft of public funds, and failure to pay over state funds. Charges also include two gross misdemeanor counts of misconduct of a public officer or employee.
Courtney Allyn Olson was arrested by the Golden Valley Police March 28, 2011 and released March 31, 2011, pending an investigation. Olson’s employment with the City of Golden Valley was terminated March 31, 2011.
In response to the discovery of Olson’s alleged theft and procedural violations, the City closed the Motor Vehicle Licensing Department April 1, 2011 and hired an independent auditor to review all policies, procedures, and internal controls. The auditor has offered preliminary recommendations to change procedures in a way that will prevent mishandling and theft of funds. The City has already begun to implement these procedures.
The City of Golden Valley takes the public trust and public service seriously and is very disappointed that it has been compromised by this incident. The City has moved forward deliberately to identify the procedures and policies that allowed this to happen.
Golden Valley’s Motor Vehicle Licensing Department is a deputy registrar for the Minnesota Department of Public Safety’s Driver and Vehicle Services Division (DVS), meaning DVS contracts with the City to operate the office.
The City will seek DVS authorization to reopen the office as soon as possible, following full compliance with recommendations from both the State and independent reviews.