ST. CLOUD -- A Sauk Rapids woman can avoid prison time but must pay $221,161.12 in restitution and adhere to her probation terms after stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from her employer through company credit cards.

Thirty-seven-year-old Tahnee Rudolph pleaded guilty in March to one felony count of theft-by-swindle. A Stearns County judge sentenced Rudolph to a year and 9 months in prison but stayed the term for up to 20 years if Rudolph abides by certain provisions of her probation. The judge also sentenced Rudolph to 180 days in Stearns County Jail to be served in 45-day increments every six months through August of 2020. The remaining 45 days can be served in August of 2021. Rudolph can serve the time through work release.

According to the criminal complaint, the embezzlement was occurring at least as far back as 2014 when the current owner bought the business. Rudolph was in charge of payroll, paying credit card bills and issuing checks for a Rockville company.  The name of the company is not listed in the court documents, but the complaint refers to a business on 234th Street in Rockville.

Records show Rudolph used two different credit cards to make personal purchases, cash withdrawals, hotel room reservations, pay utility bills and even to service her mom's pool.  The owner of the business discovered the fraud in August of last year and fired Rudolph shortly afterward.

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