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Former Pawnee County Jail Administrator charged with two counts of felony embezzlement


The Former Pawnee County Jail Administrator has been charged with two counts of felony embezzlement.


John Paul Thompson who was the jail administrator for the Pawnee County Sheriff’s Office has been charged with felony embezzlement after an investigation revealed he had stolen more than $1200.00 in cash from inmates after they were booked into jail.


On Monday, August 16, a citizen returned to the Pawnee County Sheriff’s Office to retrieve a check for the money he was booked into the Jail with days before. Upon requesting his money, it was discovered the money was never deposited into the inmate trust account and could not be located.


A search was made to locate the money, but it could not be found. An internal investigation ensued and it was discovered Thompson was the last person in possession of the money.


Sheriff Varnell immediately contacted District Attorney Mike Fisher and requested assistance from his office.


On the morning of Tuesday, August 17th, Thompson produced an open envelope with approximately $800.00 in cash. Thompson claimed the envelope containing the money had fallen behind another item instead of being deposited in the safe.


However, the money in the envelope was mostly 20 dollar bills. The missing money was mostly 100 dollar bills.


After an independent investigation by the district attorney’s office, Thompson was terminated from the Sheriff’s Office.


On Thursday, August 19th, a search of Thompson’s patrol car revealed an open and empty cash envelope from another inmate. It was discovered that inmate was booked in with more than $400.00, but the money was never deposited into the trust account.


On Friday, August 27th a warrant was issued for Thompson’s arrest for two counts of felony embezzlement. The warrant was issued with a $10,000 personal recognizance bond.


Thompson had worked for the Sheriff’s Office since January of this year and has been in Law Enforcement for more than 10 years.


Attempts to locate Thompson have been unsuccessful despite multiple attempts.


“It’s a betrayal of the public’s trust and my expectations as an employee of this Sheriff’s Office. I made a promise to the people of Pawnee County to hold everyone accountable and enforce the law and I will do just that. I was disheartened to see he was granted a PR bond and feel he should be held as accountable as any other person. Mike Fisher and his office did an excellent job investigating this case and I’m thankful to him and his office for their hard work and dedication.” said Sheriff Darrin Varnell.


Thompson has been charged with 2 counts of felony embezzlement and is presumed innocent until proven guilty.


Thompson has been placed into NCIC as a wanted person. If anyone knows the whereabouts of Thompson, they are asked to contact the Pawnee County Sheriff’s Office at 918-726-2565