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Library Worker Stole $1.3M in Printer Toner: Charges

Randall Whited charged with theft in Austin
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 6, 2020 5:00 AM CDT

(Newser) – A Texas library apparently failed, for quite some time, to notice its printer was running out of toner at a suspiciously fast pace. A former employee of the Austin Public Library is accused of fraudulently buying $1.3 million worth of printer toner, which he then allegedly stole and re-sold online, KENS 5 reports. Randall Whited was an accounting associate at the time; according to a city audit report, he "took advantage of poor purchasing reviews by his supervisors" as well as "several other purchasing and budget-related shortcomings, such as having a role in the approval of his own purchases and insufficient oversight of the Library’s budget." He is now charged with theft, the Austin American-Statesman reports.

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After receiving a tip about the allegations against Whited in March of last year, the city says it discovered Whited had been engaging in the scheme since 2007—a period of time over which, the auditor's office estimates, the library would only have needed about $150,000 worth of toner. The auditor found surveillance video showing Whited, who frequently showed up to work early, taking printer toner from his office to the parking garage where he had parked his car. In August of last year, faced with being terminated over an unrelated issue, the city says Whited resigned his post. The auditor's office submitted its report—which also accuses Whited of using a library credit card to buy thousands of dollars worth of electronics, video games, VR headsets, a drone, and more for his own personal use—to the city's police department. (Read more weird crimes stories.)

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