FARMINGTON -- A former Davis School District employee pleaded guilty to a felony for using a credit card for personal use.
Celeste Marie Johnson, 40, of Centerville, entered the guilty plea to a third-degree felony misuse of public funds on Thursday before Judge Robert Dale in 2nd District Court.
A sentencing hearing is set for Aug. 11, when Johnson could be sentenced to serve up to five years in the Utah State Prison.
Johnson, who served as head secretary for the district's Youth-in-Custody program, was charged on April 22 with a second-degree felony misuse of public funds, following an investigation by Farmington police.
After Johnson entered her guilty plea, her attorney, Robert S. Hart, said prosecutors agreed, as part of the plea agreement, that Johnson can ask the judge at a later date to reduce the charge to a class A misdemeanor once full restitution is paid.
Deputy Davis County Attorney Rick Westmoreland said Johnson charged about $6,000 on various items to a district's credit card.
According to court documents, Johnson, who was given a district credit card for business purposes, used the card "for personal purchases on numerous occasions beginning in August 2009 and ending in December 2010."
Johnson was hired as head secretary for the Youth-in-Custody program in August of 2007, said Christopher Williams, the district's community relations director.
An audit by the district's accounts payable department showed some discrepancies, so an internal audit was conducted on March 1. Johnson was placed on unpaid administrative leave on March 7 and was terminated on April 11, Williams said.