Former Vinton Car Dealership Employee Accused of Embezzlement

A woman has been accused of stealing nearly $296,000 from an eastern Iowa vehicle dealership where she’d worked for several years. 

Benton County court records show 56-year-old Kelly Banghart, of Vinton, pleaded not guilty to a theft charge earlier this month. The records don’t show a trial starting date. 

Authorities say Ervin Motor Co. officials contacted Vinton police last month after finding suspicious transactions. A court document says she told an investigator that between May 2015 and August this year she used the company’s checking account to make unauthorized payments on her personal credit cards.