Federal judge sentences former Horry County employee for stealing over $340K in government funds

Federal judge sentences former Horry County employee for stealing over $340K in government funds
A former Horry County IT employee was sentenced to two years in prison and told to pay back the hundreds of thousands of dollars that he stole. (Source: WMBF News)

HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) – A former Horry County employee who pleaded guilty to stealing over $340,000 in government funds learned his fate on Tuesday.

A judge sentenced 48-year-old Terry Petrill of Myrtle Beach to two years in federal prison. He has also been ordered to pay back the money he stole.

Petrill worked as Horry County’s chief information security officer from June 26, 2006, until Nov. 8, 2018.

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Evidence presented in court showed that from June 2015 to August 2018, Petrill ordered 41 Cisco 3850 network switches that were to be installed on the Horry County network.

During that time period, Horry County received federal program funding.

Once the network switches arrived, Petrill said he would install the switches, but that never happened, according to authorities.

Instead, they said he sold them to third parties, like eBay, and kept the money for himself.

“Those who steal from our local governments are raiding the South Carolina taxpayers,” said United States Attorney Peter McCoy Jr. “This is unacceptable, and as this case shows we will seek prison time and restitution against those who engage in such theft. I appreciate the dedicated work of our law enforcement partners and government officials in Horry County who provided critical assistance in this case.”

A Horry County spokesperson said that although the situation was unfortunate, the county thanks their federal partners for their help in investigating and prosecuting the case.

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