September 19, 2014

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State: Wellington teacher’s theft totaled $20,000

WELLINGTON — A state audit has determined that a former Wellington High School teacher stole $20,666 while he served as adviser to the school’s Future Farmers of America group.

Patrick Knoble, who is facing theft in office charges in connection with the missing money, will have to repay it, according to Ohio Auditor’s Office findings.

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Knoble

Knoble, 36, resigned earlier this year after he was indicted. He was suspended Jan. 11 after allegations surfaced that he had failed to report abuse or neglect, according to his personnel file.

Wellington Superintendent Victor Cardenzana said evidence of the missing money was found when school officials were cleaning out Knoble’s desk after he was suspended.

“Certain documents were found that were irregular,” he said.

According to the audit, Knoble wrote $5,371 worth of checks out for cash and made out $13,223 worth of checks to himself and family members. He also paid $807 to financial institutions, debited $94 for gasoline, bought items worth $415 and had overdraft and returned item fees totaling $756.

None of those purchases were for the FFA, the audit concluded.

“We suspected something was unaccounted for, but we never knew how much,” Cardenzana said.

The theft allegations aren’t Knoble’s only problems.

The Ohio Board of Education permanently revoked his teaching license earlier this year, and he is awaiting sentencing after being found guilty of misdemeanor charges that he threatened to blow up the school.

Knoble was cleared in 2006 of charges he had allowed students at his house to view pornography.

Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or bdicken@chroniclet.com.