Pictured: the burned car that held Hallwood’s financial records.
By Linda Cicoria
Forty-eight-year-old Angela Hinman Taylor, better known as Angel Taylor, the former clerk accused of 65 counts of embezzling thousands of dollars from the Town of Hallwood, struck a plea bargain earlier today with Accomack Commonwealth’s Attorney Spencer Morgan. The agreement condensed her charges to 12 counts and allows her to remain free on a $5,500 bond until sentencing on May 27.
Testimony disclosed that Taylor paid about $24,010 in restitution. Morgan broke the amounts down to more than $19,000 that Taylor garnered by overpaying herself and more than $4,000 that was paid to ANEC for her personal electric bills. The charges involved incidents that occurred between Aug. 31, 2011 and Sept. 12, 2017.
Taylor, who lives in the town, was storing town financial records in her car in October 2017 when the car burned in a mysterious fire. She told officials she had the records in the vehicle so she could take them to the auditor. The audit was set to be made because some town officials suspected her of stealing.
Taylor said she worked for Hallwood for about 13 years. Morgan said there was concern among town officials that cash payments made to the town for decals or taxes were also taken by Taylor, but those accusations could not be proven.
Morgan said when he met with town officials in 2019, some thought she was not charged with enough crimes while others wanted her to be allowed to confess to misdemeanors.
During the trial, Taylor admitted her guilt. She said she drives a tractor trailer that delivers products to Lowe’s customers in the Salisbury, Md., area and that the conviction will cause her to lose her job.
She said she wants to make amends to the town and has offered to replace the roof of the town pavilion. She was not permitted to do that because officials said it would appear to be a bribe. Taylor said she would be making COVID care packages for town residents, and would work to clean up areas in Hallwood. She said she entered the plea-agreement because “I just believe it is the best thing for everybody for the town and for me.”