Former Mayflower City Clerk Arrested
Sheriff Tim Ryals assigned an investigation to be opened on former Mayflower City Clerk Sheila Caudle in September 2017 after receiving information from a legislative auditor that funds were unaccounted for.
Mrs. Caudle began working as the City Clerk in January 2010. As the city clerk, her responsibilities included maintaining all records; she was also responsible for accepting payments for fines and making the bank deposits. Sheila Caudle resigned from her position in August of 2014.
During the investigation, documents were requested from January 1, 2010, through August 14 2014. One of the documents provided was a receipt book, which was missing several pages and seemed to have been tampered with. This receipt book was used for documenting fine payments from the public. It was reported to authorities that citizens would often pay their fines in cash while Mrs. Caudle was outside on her break smoking or working in the flower bed, and she would accept these payments while she was on her break. Several discrepancies were noted while looking through the data provided from the Mayflower Court Virtual Justice System and the bank the city used. As the investigation continued, it was determined that Shelia Caudle allegedly falsified the amount of money she collected from the public, as her computer entries never matched the bank deposits. Investigators were unable to determine how much of the total deposits were made in cash due to the missing fine payment receipts. It was also discovered that certain documents were either destroyed or had been tampered with. According to a written statement, Sheila Caudle was seen burning court documents in the parking area behind Mayflower City Hall. Sheila stated she digitized all the paperwork and no longer needed to keep the hard copy documents. There is no ordinance in place granting permission to burn court documents. Caudle is also accused of printing dummy checks just prior to her resignation. The investigation revealed a total of over $2,000,000.00 in missing funds.
On July 16, 2019, Shelia Caudle was arrested and transported to Faulkner County Detention Center Unit II, she was charged with Theft of Property (Class D Felony), Abuse of Public Trust (Class D Felony), and Tampering with Public Records (Class D Felony).