Planet Princeton

Former Princeton HealthCare Employee Charged with Stealing $186,000 from Hospital

Engelhardt-Fullar

The former director of medical staff services at Princeton Health Care Systems has been charged with stealing a total of $186,000 from the hospital over a year and a half, the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office announced today.

A joint investigation conducted by the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Economic Crime Unit and the Princeton Borough Police Department resulted in the arrest of Jhoanna Engelhardt-Fullar, 41, of  Burlington. Engelhardt-Fullar is charged with one count of second-degree theft by deception, law enforcement officials said. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in state prison and a $150,000 fine.

Princeton Health Care Systems contacted law enforcement authorities about the case in early February. Over the next three months, investigators uncovered that between April 19, 2010 and December 28, 2011, while Engelhardt-Fullar was employed as the director of medical staff services at Princeton Health Care Systems, she allegedly stole approximately $186,000 from the medical staff account.

The investigation revealed that she was issuing fraudulent checks to herself and transferring medical staff account funds to her personal credit cards.  Engelhardt-Fullar also made more than 130 unauthorized purchases on the medical staff account’s VISA debit card.  The charges for various merchandise and services included grocery stores, department stores, restaurants, auto repairs, timeshare payments and Apple products, law enforcement officials said.

Bail was set at $35,000, which Engelhardt-Fullar posted on Thursday.  She was terminated by PrincetonHealthcare in February.

Mercer County Prosecutor Joseph L. Bocchini Jr. credited Detective Michele Russell of his economic crime unit and Princeton Borough Police Detective Dan Federico with the investigation leading to the charges.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant Prosecutor James Scott.

Krystal Knapp

Krystal Knapp is the founding editor of Planet Princeton. She can be reached via email at editor AT planetprinceton.com. Send all letters to the editor and press releases to that email address.

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