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Top official stole from children's center, bought a pool, went shopping

November 4, 2009 | 12:22 pm

The former chief financial officer of Orange County’s Orangewood Children’s Foundation was convicted today of stealing more than $780,000 from the nonprofit for abused children.

Tracy Lynn Salcido, 40, pleaded guilty in Orange County Superior Court to 206 felony counts of forgery and 20 felony counts of falsifying records. She was sentenced to 12 years in prison and ordered to pay $1.15 million in restitution and legal and accounting fees stemming from the case.

Prosecutors say that, between 1999 and 2005, Salcido forged 206 checks from Orangewood’s accounts and deposited them in an outside business account. She tried to hide the theft by under-reporting donations to the foundation and overstating expenses.

Salcido used the stolen money for a pool and spa at the Yorba Linda home she shared with her husband, vacations, shopping sprees and several vehicles, including a BMW.

Founded in 1981, Orangewood built and supports the county’s only emergency shelter for neglected and abused children.

-- Mike Anton in Orange County