Police & Courts

Indictment: Anitoch Church treasurer had access to checking account without oversight

Fire destroyed Antioch Baptist Church near Hannibal, Mo., on Dec. 20, 2016, and it was deemed suspicious in nature. The church's treasurer, Donald R. White, was indicted Thursday. | H-W File Photo
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Mar. 12, 2018 9:40 pm

ST. LOUIS -- As treasurer of the Antioch Baptist Church in rural Hannibal, Donald R. White was an authorized signatory on the church's checking account, wrote most of the checks from the account and made the vast majority of all the deposits without approval or oversight from other church members.

The federal indictment filed Thursday in St. Louis alleges White embezzled about $320,888 from the church for his personal benefit and the benefit of others. White was treasurer of the church from January 1994 through December 2016.

White, 68, was arrested last week after being indicted on two counts of wire fraud.

The charges allege he wrote a check from the church's checking account to Walmart for $350 on April 19, 2016, for his personal benefit. It further alleges White wrote a check from the church's account to Fidelity Investments for $3,000, for his personal benefit.

Ralls County Sheriff Gerry Dinwiddie said last week that White was arrested following an extensive investigation that was conducted in wake of the Dec. 20, 2016, fire that destroyed the church. The fire was deemed suspicious in nature.

White was suspected of being involved in a large-scale theft of church funds just prior to the fire, Dinwiddie said.

Arraignment in the case is set for March 19. White is free after posting $10,000 bond.

Things to Do