A former Bard Water District officer manager has pleaded guilty to grand theft by embezzlement, a felony.
Darla Jean Cofske remains free on bail but is scheduled to appear Oct. 25 in Imperial County Jail Court for sentencing.
Cofske pleaded not guilty at a Jan. 18 arraignment but changed her plea Aug. 9.
The original complaint filed Dec. 18, 2012, alleged that Cofske, a Foothills resident, embezzled more than $70,000 from the water district between December 2005 and December 2010 while employed by the organization.
The Bard Water District employed Cofske from the mid-1990s to January 2011, when she was relieved of her position shortly after the start of the investigation.
Imperial County District Attorney Gilbert G. Otero filed the complaint in Imperial County Superior Court in El Centro, Calif.
According to the complaint, Cofske used district checks to pay for personal items, writing out checks with only her signature, when policy required two signatures.
The complaint also noted she opened a false credit card under the name Bard Water District Field, which she used to buy personal items.
The water district has secured a judgment against Cofske to recover the embezzled funds, according to Mitchell A. Driskill, the El Centro attorney representing the water district.
Reached by telephone, John Serrano, Cofske’s attorney, declined to comment “outside of what is already on the record.”