NPSO: Investigation lands fired deputy behind bars on felony theft charges

Crime

James Bankston, 53, is charged with felony theft after Natchitoches Parish deputies say he violated standard NPSO operating procedures and stole from the Civil Operations Bureau. (Photo: Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office)

NATCHITOCHES PARISH, La. (KTAL/KMSS) — A former deputy who was fired from the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office in March is facing felony charges, accused of stealing from the collections department.

According to NPSO, 53-year-old James Bankston Jr. was arrested on Wednesday, April 14 and he is charged with felony theft following an investigation.

Bankston, a 17-year-veteran of NPSO, worked in the Civil Operations Bureau. COB is responsible for the collection of property taxes, garnishments, sheriff’s sales, civil processing issues, and the collection of cash fines and bonds.

NPSO says on March 24, Bankston was terminated due to violations of the NPSO Standard Operating Procedures. The violations were found during an internal audit of Bankston’s day-to-day work assignment that discovered improprieties.

As mandated by law, the Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s Office and Natchitoches Parish District Attorney were notified.

Bankston was taken and booked into the Natchitoches Parish Detention on his charges. He made full restitution and has been released on bond pending his court appearance.

The Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office says they have no tolerance towards the misuse or misappropriation of taxpayer funds or assets.

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