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ELKHORN — An employee at a Piggly Wiggly grocery store in Elkhorn has been charged with stealing lottery tickets in an alleged scheme that may have cost the store more than $70,000.

The Walworth County District Attorney has charged Jaime A. Ludke, 42, of Elkhorn, with felony theft, punishable by up to three years and six months in prison, if convicted.

According to a criminal complaint, Ludke committed the theft in December while working as a service desk clerk at Frank’s Piggly Wiggly, 58 W. Market St.

The complaint indicates that Ludke is charged with stealing lottery tickets valued at between $2,500 and $5,000. But combined with other money “unaccounted for,” the complaint alleges that the store’s total alleged loss is $71,075.

Ludke had worked at the Piggly Wiggly since February 2015.

According to the complaint, investigators found surveillance video showing Ludke cashing in lottery tickets on five different occasions. Prosecutors charge that the store clerk “wouldn’t answer questions” about the theft suspicions.

Court records show Ludke is due in court March 20 for an initial appearance on the felony theft charge.

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Assistant Managing Editor

Pete Wicklund is the local editor for The Journal Times.

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