West Hawaii Today is reporting that Kona resident Cheryl Holdcroft has admitting to forging checks and stealing money from the Kona Hospital Foundation. Holdcroft, 46, will spend 60 days in jail, have five years of unsupervised probation and pay $150,000 in restitution.
Holdcroft was the former development director of the foundation, which serves as the nonprofit fundraising organization for Kona Community Hospital and raises funds to pay for items not covered by fees for services or state subsidies. Third Circuit Court Judge Elizabeth Strance granted Holdcroft a five-year deferred acceptance of her guilty pleas to one count of first-degree theft, four counts of second-degree forgery, and one count of being an accomplice to second-degree theft. With the deferral, the Court will later dismiss the charges if she meets all conditions of her plea deal, which would leave Holdcroft with no criminal record.
Holdcroft said she “aided and facilitated” co-worker Ku’uipo Kealoha Pahinui, who was also indicted and previously sentenced in connection with the theft. Pahinui pleaded guilty to one count of second degree theft on September 29.
The plea comes as a surprise to many in the nonprofit community. Since moving to Kona from the Seattle area, Holdcroft and her husband Todd Holdcroft, who formerly worked for Microsoft Corporation, had been involved in supporting many nonprofit fundraisers. Cheryl often took charge of the fundraising auctions, and worked tirelessly soliciting donations of auction items and funds to support the organizations. She and her husband often made significant financial contributions to the organizations, sometimes anonymously. Even her parents, who are not Kona residents, had been generous supporters of the Kona community.