Fire Engulfs House Of Cedarville Treasurer Accused Of Stealing City Money

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CEDARVILLE (KFSM) - A Friday morning fire destroyed the home of the former Cedarville treasurer accused of stealing $300,000 from the city.

Firefighters responded around 9 a.m. to the house fire at 336 Arkansas 162 in Cedarville. That address is listed in property records as belonging to Alicson Reding, the former Cedarville official who an audit states issued $295,880 in authorized checks between 2008 and 2014.

Cedarville Fire Department and several other area agencies responded to the scene and knocked out the fire by noon. No one was injured, but authorities said the house is a total loss.

"This is a tragedy," said Cedarville fire chief Jesse Hyatt. "Somebody lost their home."

Reding resigned in April and admitted to 5NEWS that she took the money from city accounts. She told 5NEWS she vows to “make things right” and “pay back every penny.” Reding said she stole the money to pay bills owed by her family.

The former treasurer's criminal case is still pending in Crawford County Circuit Court, records show. She was arrested in August on suspicion of seven counts of felony theft of property.

The fire chief said there is no evidence the fire is connected to Reding's criminal case. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, Hyatt said.

27 comments

  • Fed Up

    Burned down the house to collect the insurance, and then pay back the promised $300k in order to stay out of prison?

  • not the mama

    I see where most of the money she took went, how many people who work for a small city could afford to have a house that size? I think that the two previous writers are correct about it being an insurance job, but I bet the insurance company will be investigating thoroughly!

  • Cedarvillecitizen

    Wow I’m appalled at the comments here. Praying for the family. If any one actually lived in the area would have known this house wasn’t built by your normal contractor. The husband, wife and kids all put hard work into this house and cut corners to have it built for cheaper. Yeah she may have stole money but that should not be half the news story. This news story should be about just a house fire like it would if it were anyone else. Instead of lashing out at the family try praying for them.

    • Daniel

      A snake is still a snake. Welcome to the internet. You must be new here. Stealing is stealing…and I have a feeling the city will get some money back when she gets her insurance claim.

  • PUZZLED

    From the pictures I am seeing, it looks like there was a lot of personal items that could have been salvaged before it burned down. Looks like before it got completely engulfed that the people standing & watching & taking pictures could have been throwing some of the stuff into the yard to salvage it???. I also didn’t see any fire trucks or water being sprayed on the house???

    • oneunhappyviewer

      Really wow!!!!Hey lets all risk our lives to save the owners things not like the house is engulfed in flames or anything

      • PUZZLED

        Evidently you didn’t see the early pictures that oddly they have now taken down. It wasn’t fully engulfed when everyone arrived…..

      • oneunhappyviewer

        Ummm maybe u should check ur facts I was on seen Puzzeled. So guess u wanna make speculations and assume things u know nothing about the fire started on the left side upstairs the wind blew while fire fighters was hooking their hoses up then the whole roof was engulfed in a matter of seconds get ur facts straight….Instead of making Assumptions u know nothing about and
        dont have the answers too I didnt see u on scene

    • AMADVIEWER

      The fire departments did all they could, the entire roof of the house was already gone. It was too dangerous to go into the house to get anything! The family was not home at the time so they couldn’t get anything out either.

    • GETALIFE

      Dear Puzzled, the first folks on the scene did start pulling items out of the house, in fact the front door was kicked in by a concerned citizen and while the downstairs was full of smoke and the upstairs full of fire, many folks still were running in/out of the house. Pulling a vehicle away from the house, pulling stuff out of the garage as quickly as possible, and trying to find pictures or whatever they could from as far into the house as these folks could get.

      This article is in poor taste, 2 kids lost all their Christmas, 2 kids lost all of their childhood possessions, 2 kids lost their cloths, but hey, there were 2 house fairs today so I guess channel 5 wanted to make the news more interesting. The news folks that showed up on the scene from 5 and 40/29 were very polite, and both expressed disappointment and how distasteful this article and the comments are. Its a tragedy for the family!

      And I was on scene, and I went into the house while it was burning, and I am NOT a firefighter, and yes once fire crews I too took some pictures with my cell phone. And with all of that said, how in the hell does that have any impact on the bottom line, a family lost everything.

    • joesumone

      She lost the respect of everyone when she illegally obtained nearly $300K from the city of Cedarville. It is through her actions that her family was brought into this. While it is a sad situation for the family, her husband and kids will find another residence and she will find her future residence at the state’s women’s facility.

      • we'vehadit

        She won’t do a day in jail. Momma is county treasurer, former mayor and good buddies with the judges, prosecuter (recused) and her attorney is son of one of the county judges. Now if the feds get of their butts…300k in tax evasion, then yep women’s prison where she belongs. I only have sympathy for the kids..only the kids.

  • PUZZLED

    WOW!! What happened to the pictures on here earlier?? They showed a much smaller fire with the possibitly of saving personal items. There was even one with a cop standing there watching it burn…..

    • oneunhappyviewer

      I didnt have to see 5 news coverage I was on scene and the officers was waiting on the fire crew to hook up the hoses that was the footage and as for the pictures that was as the house was engulfing in flames. Im not going to sit here and let u disrrespect the crew that was on the scene and all the officers just because u feel u need to in order to make urself feel better about something u wasnt involved in or even on the scene to say exactly as to what happened and how fast it did happen. you are very puzzled as u said that is a PROVEN fact

  • Disappointed

    Disappointed in 5 News for the headline, “Fire Engulfs House of Cedarville Treasurer Accused of Stealing Money.” Wow, forget about a family who lost everything. However, even more disappointed at the comments. Society never seems to disappoint in passing judgement. Regardless of how you feel about the theft case, a family including two children lost everything. My prayers go out to them.

    • oneunhappyviewer

      you know what all u people are more worried about her past mistakes instead of seeing this as a family whom lost everything their memories belongings and so much more from this tragic accident and its people like u whom judge that make this world cold and cruel because I dont care what she done this family didnt derserve this and maybe u should think about what u say because this same very thing could happen to u and ur family. It’s a SAD day when people in this world can be so HEARTLESS and not even for one minute realize this family has nothing and her past has nothing to do with this tragedy that her family has endured u people are wrong on so many levels!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Savannah

    I will never watch 5 news again! Shame on all of you! What happened last year should not be broadcasted on this story. Pathetic. You will all get what is coming, this was a slap in the face to the family.

  • Kevin Pixley

    This person would never intentionally lose everything keepsakes, photos, an entire family history just went up in flames. The insurance would never cover the amount owed to the city. Shame on you for expecting the worse.

  • Kevin Pixley

    Beverly Pyle is an upstanding, honest person that would never interfere with her daughters mistake. It is shameful for anyone to suggest that she has had anything to do with this matter. It is even worse to suggest that she would interfere with any of the judges, prosecutors, or anyone else involved with the case.

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