Former Ivor clerk sentenced

Published 6:56 pm Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Jennifer Bumgardner to repay $40K

[Editor’s note: This version makes two corrections, one concerning the time to be served and the other about the charges.]


The Zuni woman who was found guilty of embezzling as much as (potentially) $84,000-plus from the Town of Ivor is to serve only one year of active time in prison, and must pay $40,000 in restitution. Jennifer Michell Bumgardner, who was the town clerk and treasurer from 2014 until her arrest in August 2018, was in Southampton County Circuit Court on Sept. 24 for the sentencing.

Jennifer M. Bumgardner

Though Bumgardner had pleaded not guilty at her trial, which took place on June 18, she had been declared by retired Judge William R. Savage to be guilty of 10 felony counts of embezzlement. Nine of the charges were each for felony embezzlement of $200 or more, and one for embezzling $500 or more.

The Virginia Courts Case Information website lists each of the 10 charges as felony embezzlement. For nine of those, Bumgardner was sentenced to 10 years with 10 suspended; one charge has 10 years and nine suspended.

Ivor Mayor Tara Kea told The Tidewater News on Tuesday that the judge decided on the $40,000 figure, though she pointed out that Southampton Commonwealth Attorney Eric Cooke had asked for the full $84,000-plus.

The mayor also stated that Bumgardner will have to pay no less than $100 a month and that restitution must be completed by the time her probation ends five years following her prison sentence.

“Sadly, the burden is on the town,” said Kea. “It’s been a very frustrating experience, to say the least. I do feel that the Commonwealth Attorney did an excellent job, but a little disappointed in the judge’s ruling.”

Since Bumgardner has been gone from the office, the money properly collected from water bills, taxes, etc., has gone directly to a bank.

“We have deposited over $30,000 in cash alone,” said the mayor.

A bond hearing for Bumgardner is scheduled for this Thursday, and, according to Kea, the woman is appealing.

“She’s hoping to stay out of jail.”