Ex-Goodwill manager accused of setting up false employees to collect their payroll

By Joel Eisenbaum - Investigative Reporter

HOUSTON - A former manager at Goodwill, the non-profit organization, was arrested and charged with theft, Friday.

Cheryl Jananne Jennings, 58, had been wanted by the Houston Police Department since October after being formally accused of stealing nearly $100,000.

"She was setting up some bogus false employees to obtain their payroll," private investigator, Hunter Cox, said.

Cox spent months tracking Jennings, who proved to be elusive, the seasoned private investigator said.

Jennings was arrested outside an apartment in La Porte by the Houston Police Department's Major Offenders squad.

The crimes are alleged to have occurred between December 2014 and August 2016.

A charging document states that Jennings siphoned $93,812.25 by depositing the paychecks into her personal bank account.

Jennings previously had an office at the Goodwill store at 2411 Bay Area Blvd.

Terri Paris, a representative for Goodwill Industries of Houston, sent the following statement regarding the arrest.

“We are very pleased that Ms. Jennings has been arrested, and that this case can now move forward.
 
"Financial controls in place at the time of this incident allowed us to detect irregularities during an internal audit. We reported the situation to law enforcement and have been working with authorities closely throughout the investigation.

"Any theft committed against a non-profit is a particularly despicable crime. The dollars lost are not available to fund programs that help people. Program participants, donors, and organizations are all adversely affected. We hope that the prosecution of this case will be a deterrent that helps everyone in the community.”