Second person arrested in Horizon South embezzlement

Crime

PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — A second person is in custody after authorities say over $400,000 was embezzled from Horizon South Resort.

On March 9, Samuel Lester Whitehead is accused of fraudulently obtaining credit cards in the resort’s name and made purchases with those cards totaling $27,707.27.

Bay County Sheriff’s Office deputies say Whitehead was linked to four separate credit cards issued through Regions Bank and Sam’s Club.

The alleged acts took place between January 2017 through February 2019.

Whitehead was found to be involved in the case after a co-defendant, Cynthia Hayes was arrested in January. Hayes was employed as the bookkeeper of the resort.

Cynthia Hayes

Through an investigation into Hayes, deputies say it was discovered that Whitehead was also involved and had obtained the fraudulent credit cards.

The cards were issued in Whitehead’s name as well as the Horizon South Home Owner’s Association.

Deputies say a forensic audit was conducted for all accounts by Horizon South Resort and it was found over $400,000 in funds had been misappropriated through bank withdrawals, credit card transactions, electronic withdrawals, and deposits.

Whitehead appeared in court on Tuesday and has yet to post bail.

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