The treasurer of the Bensalem Township High School Music Booster Association is accused of stealing more than $25,000 from the association and using the money to pay for items including a vacation in Florida, personal taxes, Dunkin Donuts, Door Dash, Boscov’s, Home Depot, Lowes, EZ Pass, gas and phone bills.
Rebekah Watson, 44, of Independence Court, Bensalem, turned herself in to Bensalem Police today on charges of access device fraud, theft by unlawful taking and theft by failure to make required disposition of funds received. She was arraigned by District Justice Michael Gallagher and was released on $75,000 unsecured bail.
Bensalem Police said the president and vice president of the Bensalem Township High School Music Booster Association contacted them Feb. 8 to report that they believed over $9,500 was missing from the Music Booster Association bank account.
They noticed suspicious bank account withdrawals to a Venmo account named @Rebekah-Watson-2, police said. Police said they were advised that the treasurer for the association was Rebekah Watson.
Bensalem School District Administrators were advised and offered full cooperation with the police investigation, police said. “We are grateful to the Bensalem High School music boosters president and vice president for their prompt response in reporting the financial irregularities to the Bensalem Township Police. As this is an ongoing investigation, the district has no additional comment at this time,” District Superintendent Sam Lee said via email.
A Bensalem Township Police Detective began his investigation into the missing funds. After obtaining bank records starting in January of 2021, the detective conducted an accounting of all the deposits and withdrawals from the Music Booster bank account and the Venmo account. The detective discovered that Watson made unauthorized cash withdrawals and money transfers from the Music Booster bank account into the Venmo account in her name, police said.
Money received from booster members was collected through Venmo and placed into the same Venmo account. It was also discovered that $2,200 raised during a 2022 coin-toss fundraiser was missing and never deposited into either account, police said.
Money from the Venmo account was used to make payments for a vacation in Florida, personal taxes, food and personal bills, police said. The total misappropriation of funds from the Bensalem High School Music Booster bank account, police said, was found to be $25,569.73.
Bensalem Police expressed thanks to the Bensalem Township High School Music Booster Association and the Bensalem Township School District for their cooperation during this investigation.