By Scott Alonso, Public Information Officer, Contra Costa County District Attorney
Yesterday, Sept. 5, 2019, 44-year-old Pittsburg resident Jenelle Renee Silva was convicted by a Contra Costa County jury of six felonies, including the embezzlement of $247,456.08 from her former employer Bay Area Washout Systems located in Pittsburg. In addition, the jury found Ms. Silva committed the aggravated, white collar crime enhancements of two or more felonies involving a loss of over $100,000.
The Contra Costa District Attorney’s Office previously prosecuted Ms. Silva for embezzling $80,000 from the insurance company where she worked before Bay Area Washout Systems. Accordingly, she had a prior felony conviction in 2011 for embezzlement at the time of her conduct in this case.
In approximately 2012, Bay Area Washout Systems elevated Jenelle Silva to office manager and she obtained access to the company’s books and records, including the accounting software known as Quickbooks. One of her job duties included printing checks for the partners of the company to sign.
From 2012 through January 2017, she printed additional checks written out in her own name. She traced the managing partner’s signature onto those checks and then deposited them. She also used a company credit card to pay her daughter’s phone bill.
The evidence showed that the defendant tried to delete any evidence of her crimes by removing the records for the checks from Quickbooks entirely or changing the entries to make the checks look like legitimate business expenses. A forensic accountant determined that Silva spent the stolen funds on personal expenses such as groceries, gasoline, Starbucks, and movies.
Silva also was charged with the identity theft of both Bay Area Washout Systems and Thomas Koebel, General Manager for the company, and used it “to obtain, and attempt to obtain credit, goods, services, real property, and medical information” without his consent, according to the charging document, which can be viewed, here: Indictment Silva December 2018 An effort to reach Koebel for comment was unsuccessful prior to publication.
Deputy District Attorney Jeremy Seymour of the Special Operations Division prosecuted the case on behalf of the People. Sentencing is set for October 18 at 1:30 p.m. before the Honorable Judge Castellanos. Jenelle Silva faces up to five years in state prison for this conduct.
Case information: People v. Jenelle Silva, Docket Number 05-182401-0
Allen Payton contributed to this report.