State Auditor Stacey Pickering Confiscates Over 75 Firearms and Issues Nearly $400,000 Demand in Ecru, Mississippi

Pontotoc, Miss. – On Tuesday, September 12, 2017, Special Agents from the Mississippi Office of the State Auditor arrested former City Clerk of Ecru, Mississippi, Gretchin Moody, and former Chief of Police of Ecru, Mississippi, Paul Martin Blaylock, for embezzlement and issued demands of $393,085.56, which includes interest and investigative costs added to the amount embezzled.

City of Ecru officials notified the State Auditor’s Office after internal discrepancies were discovered. The OSA Investigative Division determined that the embezzled funds were used to purchase over 75 firearms, which have been seized by the Office of the State Auditor and submitted as evidence in the case, which the Office of the Attorney General State of Mississippi will prosecute.

“The auditors and investigators in the State Auditor’s Office are crucial in unraveling schemes by some public official to steal from the taxpayers,” said General Hood. “I applaud their efforts to hold officials accountable and deter others from getting greedy.”

Stacey Pickering, State Auditor of Mississippi, held a press conference at the Pontotoc County Court House in Pontotoc, Mississippi, saying: “I appreciate the work of Jim Hood and the Attorney General’s Office in assisting in prosecuting this case along with the hard work of the OSA team. Any time public funds are embezzled, it is a travesty, especially in towns like Ecru where the trust of neighbors, friends, and family is betrayed.”

Moody and Blaylock are jailed in the Pontotoc County Adult Detention Center under bond for $30,000 and $20,000, respectively. Arraignment for both is set for September 26, 2017.

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