6:00: Morning News

Mercer County woman admits to using embezzled money to finance daughter’s cupcake business

BLUEFIELD, W.Va. — A Mercer County woman accused of embezzling nearly $1 million from her employer and using some of the money to fund her daughter’s cupcake business has pleaded guilty in federal court.

Roseanna Coomes

Roseanna Coomes, 67, of Brushfork, entered guilty pleas Thursday to wire fraud and to making a false statement on a tax return.

Prosecutors accused Coomes of stealing the money over a 10-year period, while working as the office manager at Cole Truck Parts in Bluefield, and using some of the embezzled funds to finance her daughter’s business, Cupcake Kisses, near Princeton.  The business has since closed. Coomes’ daughter, Jessica Coomes Johnson, also was charged with embezzlement.

Jessica Coomes Johnson

“You reap what you sow,” said U.S. Attorney Mike Stuart. “More than 10 years of scheming and the theft of almost $1 million.  Being in business is difficult enough without an employee stealing from the company.  I want to thank IRS-Criminal Investigations and the Bluefield Police Department for excellent work in this case.”

As a part of the plea, Coomes agreed to pay Cole Truck Parks $969,316 and the Internal Revenue Service $64,330.  She was placed on a $10,000 unsecured bond after the judge determined she was not a flight risk or a threat to the community. Coomes faces up to 23 years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000, when she is sentenced in June.
Cole Truck Parts is owned by former Bluefield mayor Thomas Cole, who attended Thursday’s hearing but declined to comment on the case.