Atwater woman accused of embezzling $52,000 from Merced doctor

June 24, 2014 

Desiree M. Lacount, 46, was arrested Monday on suspicion of embezzling about $52,000 from a Merced doctor over a four-year period.


An Atwater woman was free on bail Tuesday, a day after she was arrested on suspicion of embezzling about $52,000 from a Merced doctor’s office, according to the Merced Police Department.

Desiree M. Lacount, 46, was jailed Monday, but posted a $20,000 bail bond and was released a short time later, according to Merced County Jail records.

Detective Allen Adrian said Lacount was identified as a suspect in the embezzlement from Dr. Mark Samberg’s office, which apparently dates back to May 2010 when Lacount was first hired.

Efforts to reach Lacount, her attorney Mark Girdner, and Samberg were unsuccessful Tuesday.

Police said Lacount was in charge of making daily bank deposits for the doctor. Investigators believe Lacount would typically deposit checks for the doctor, but would pocket any cash payments made to the office, according to a police statement.

“It was brought to the doctor’s attention by another employee that Lacount was putting the cash from the register into her purse,” the statement said.

Detectives said more than $52,000 in cash should have been deposited dating back to 2010, but police said they could only find records of about $90 in cash deposits into the doctor’s accounts.

Police said bank video surveillance showed Lacount depositing checks, but no cash.

Lacount and her attorney met with police briefly Monday, but she invoked her right to remain silent and made no statements to investigators, officers said.

Police are asking anyone with information about the case to contact Merced police Detective Allen Adrian at (209) 385-4731.

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