A former Murphy USA employee is accused of stealing lottery tickets while on the job.

A felony case was formally filed Monday in Faulkner County Circuit Court against Sydney Renee Wilson, 33. The Conway woman was charged with two Class D felonies – lottery fraud and theft of property.

Online records show the thefts at the gas station occurred in late December and early January.

The Conway Police Department was alerted on Jan. 3 of the lottery card thefts at Murphy USA, according to a probable cause affidavit. Store managers had called police, alleging their former employee was possibly responsible for stealing nearly $3,000 worth of lottery tickets.

The two told officer Matthew Edgmon they believed (and reviewed on surveillance footage) Wilson would take $10- and $20-scratch off tickets while she was working as a cashier. Subsequent audits reflected their suspicions, the officer’s report states.

After reviewing the store’s audits, the managers said they began reviewing security footage when they “found that Wilson, while working, was pulling lottery tickets, scratching off to expose the UPC and then scanning the ticket to check if it was a winner.”

According to the affidavit, the 33-year-old Conway woman took cards from the gas station on Dec. 26, 27, 29 and 31 and also on Jan. 2.

“On the first occasion, after one of the first lottery tickets, Wilson was also seen removing an unknown about of cash from the register and then placing it in her pocket,” the affidavit states.

The store managers said a separate office configured the lottery ticket shortages. The group determined the store’s unaccounted for lottery tickets totaled $2,979 However, it was unclear at that time how much of that loss was attributed specifically to Wilson, the report states.

In a follow-up interview with detective Rachel Mistrille, the Conway woman reportedly admitted to stealing lottery tickets while working at Murphy USA.

Initially, the 33-year-old claimed she was fired because she purchased and cashed out lottery tickets while on the clock, which was against company policy. However, Wilson soon admitted she did not pay for all the tickets she’d cashed, according to the affidavit.

Wilson told Mistrille on Feb. 5 that she “would scratch off the bar code at the bottom of the ticket(s), scan them and cash the ones that were winners.”

Altogether, the Conway woman said she believes she got $1,100 to $1,200 out of the thefts. Wilson agreed to talk to police about the incident because she wanted to pay back the money she’d taken, adding that she took the tickets because “she had been having financial difficulties,” the affidavit states.

Staff writer Marisa Hicks can be reached at mhicks@thecabin.net.

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