Former banker accused of stealing thousands

FOX 35 News at 5 p.m.

- A former Marion County banker is accused of stealing nearly $700,000 from customers.

The woman worked at an established bank where, until now, she had earned the trust of Tia Dodson and her husband.

"The closest people to her are the one's she took advantage of," Dodson said.

According to police, that banker, Connie Willis, was anything but trustworthy.  They said she stole nearly $200,000 from the Dodson's, and nearly half-a-million dollars from other victims.

Dodson said, "We would've never ever thought in a million years that she would have done something like this to us."

Ocala Police say Willis worked at two different banks over the past six years.  Investigators said she opened a fake bank account for credit cards while working at Wells Fargo, and allegedly used client's money to make payments on those cards.

Then, when she took a job at SunTrust, police say she stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from her own clients there, too. Most of them were over the age of 60.

Sgt. Barnes with the Ocala Police Department said, "She was transferring from one account to another."

Dodson and her husband said they felt something was off about their bank statements in July.

"Yes, the numbers were all there," Dodson explained. "But, they were copies of statements. And, she would hand-deliver things to us because 'there was a problem at the bank.'"

Police said, as far as they know, there are only six victims. Still, Dodson had some advice for other people.

"Whoever dealt with her, I hope that they look at their books and make sure everything's legitimately done."

Dodson said she is grateful the bank worked to get her money back.

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