Crime

Embezzlement charge dropped against Ocean Springs ex-realty employee

JACKSON COUNTY -- An Ocean Springs resident accused in the embezzlement of hundreds of thousands of dollars from a realty company she worked for is no longer facing prosecution.

A Jackson County grand jury had indicted Diane Lynn Williams, 48, on a charge of embezzlement last year.

The indictment said she took $417,576.74, but it did not indicate from where the money was taken.

The Jackson County District Attorney's Office later filed a motion to dismiss the charge because of a "defect in the indictment."

The case was dismissed without prejudice, meaning it could again be brought before a grand jury.

Ocean Springs police arrested Williams in March 2015.

Police at that time said she was Gulf Coast Residential Realty's office manager and was collecting rental property payments but cashing them for her own use.

Williams later waived her arraignment and pleaded not guilty.

Police launched an investigation in February 2015 after the money was reported missing.

They said Williams left the state and turned up in Henderson, Nev.

They tracked her down and provided the Las Vegas Metro police Fugitive Task Force with her address there. After her arrest, she waived extradition proceedings to face the charge in Mississippi.

Police said the alleged theft occurred over more than two years beginning in 2012.

Williams could not be reached for comment Thursday.

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