The City of Key West, Florida

The Southernmost City in th Continental United States


Woman Arrested for Defrauding School Organization

Key West Police Criminal Investigations Unit Detectives have arrested the former president of the Poinciana Elementary School Parent Teacher Organization for allegedly stealing nearly $10,000 from a fund intended for student functions and activities.

Vivian Tapia-Smith, 38, faces a felony charge for committing an organized scheme to defraud less than $20,000.

In August, it was discovered that Tapia-Smith had been making unauthorized cash withdrawals since late December of 2018. Documents indicate Tapia-Smith made more than 20 unauthorized withdrawals for a total of more than $9,800 from the PTO account. Financial records also indicate the cash that was stolen from the PTO account would subsequently be deposited into Tapia-Smith’s personal bank account.

Tapia-Smith made enough unauthorized cash withdrawals to cause the PTO to run out of funding for legitimate purchases.

Tapia-Smith was arrested without incident and transported to the Monroe County Detention Center where she is being held on a $50,000 bond.