Tyler Police arrest Southern Utility employee - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

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Tyler Police arrest Southern Utility employee

Maria Borja. Photo Source: Smith County Jail. Maria Borja. Photo Source: Smith County Jail.

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - Police say a Southern Utilities employee stole more than $20,000 in cash from customers.

Maria Borja is charged with theft of property.

Police say she turned herself in Friday morning.

The company was tipped off that something wasn't right when several checks went missing.

Kim Mims says she paid her water bill last month, but the check never cleared. Days later, she received an alarming letter.

"I immediately contacted by bank and they advised me stop payment on that check. So, that's what I did," says Mims.

Police for nearly two weeks, 24-year-old Maria Borja was in charge of depositing the payments while another employee was on vacation.

Borja is accused of stealing $23,000 in cash, and burning dozens of customer checks.

According to the letter sent out to customers, this was a first for Southern Utilities.

Mims says the company handled the situation the right way, "They immediately stood up to what their employee did, so I think a lot of customers are going to be happy about that."

Police say from the beginning of the investigation, Borja was the only suspect.

Borja is currently being held in the Smith County Jail on $30,000 bond.

Southern Utilities would not comment on the case, because it is a criminal investigation.

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