Former water company book keeper arrested (mentions sexual abuse of Nason children)
By Jim Cornelius
Former Sisters book keeper Nancy Simpson was arrested in Arcata, California Monday, March 25 on two counts of aggravated theft for an alleged embezzlement of approximately $54,000 from Indian Meadow Water Company.
Simpson's book keeping business kept the water company's accounts from 1983-95. She allegedly embezzled the funds in a period from January, 1991 to August, 1995.
Indian Meadow Water Company representatives told police that Simpson had authority to pay herself and the other water company employees according to an established pay scale. Simpson allegedly overpaid herself by an average of nearly $1,000 per month over a four year period.
Simpson left Sisters and moved to Arcata in September, 1995.
The Indian Meadow Water Company reported the alleged theft in October, 1995. The Sisters Police Department investigated, assisted by the Bend Office of the F.B.I. and the Deschutes County District Attorney's office. A grand jury indicted Simpson on two counts of aggravated theft, a Class B felony and Arcata Police arrested Simpson Monday and lodged her in Humbolt County Jail in Eureka, California.
In statements made to police, representatives of the Indian Meadow Water Company indicated that they noticed Simpson's job performance had deteriorated starting in 1991 -- around the time allegations of child molestation began to surface about her stepfather Eugene Cochran.
Cochran plead guilty to charges that between January and May of 1991 he subjected several Nason children to sexual contact by touching. Evidence was presented at Cochran's sentencing that he had a history of deviant behavior spanning 45 years that included his own stepchildren. Friends wrote that the case had a severe impact on Simpson.
Simpson now faces extradition from California. According to the Deschutes County District Attorney's Office, if Simpson waives extradition as expected, she should be returned to Oregon in about a week after which she will be arraigned on the indictment.
Assistant District Attorney Pat Flaherty said Simpson, if convicted, faces a presumptive sentence of two years probation and the possibility of 60 days in jail on each count. The maximum sentence the court could impose is 12 months in prison.