Sacto 9-1-1
August 3, 2012
Former Thunder Valley employee pleads to theft from casino

A former human resources manager at Thunder Valley Casino Resort has pleaded guilty to theft from Indian tribal government.

Erika Michele Carlton, 38, of Roseville, entered her plea Thursday in federal court.

For five years ending in 2011, Carlton embezzled and stole up to $400,000 in money and property from Thunder Valley, the Lincoln casino owned by the United Auburn Indian Community, according to the U.S. Attorney's office in Sacramento.

Carlton had access to Thunder Valley credit cards and other funds she could use to buy items for employees. Carlton used Thunder Valley funds to buy raffle prizes that were given out at employee functions, such as Christmas parties.

The prizes included gift cards, iPods and televisions. Prizes were either kept by Carlton or returned to the store for cash or merchandise credit for her own use, according to the press release.

Carlton is scheduled to be sentenced Nov. 1.

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