Crew discovers $32,000 in cash at Juvenile Court Clerk's office

Tuesday, May 25, 2010 at 3:53pm

In the aftermath of Nashville’s flood, clean-up workers discovered $32,000 in wet cash stored in a safe at the Juvenile Court Clerk’s office, The City Paper has learned.

Dampened by high floodwater inside the Juvenile Justice Center on Woodland Street, the money went to a restoration center in Murfreesboro and is scheduled for delivery back to Nashville by Wednesday, when it will be deposited.

The money was originally found days after floodwater first reached the center by an environmental-service crew contracted by Metro, according to Nancy Whittemore, director of Metro General Services.

Juvenile Court Clerk Vic Lineweaver, who lost his bid for re-election last week, said it’s not unusual for such a large sum of money to be stored in the office’s safe.

“We have to have money on hand for each day, for each one of the clerks that works the window,” Lineweaver said. “It was in the safe and locked up.”

Julius Sloss, director of operations for the Juvenile Court Clerk’s office, said $20,000 of the $32,000 was collected through child custody payments made the previous Friday, April 30, one day before the downpours began. The remaining $12,000, he said, came from fines, fees and other miscellaneous payments.

“Most people pay their child support in cash,” Sloss said. “Some pay in money orders or cashier’s checks.”

Sloss said the office makes bank deposits on Monday, Wednesday and Friday of each week. He said the money was left in the safe over the weekend and would have been deposited Monday, May 3, had it not been for the flood.

According to Sloss, the money was taken to Restoration Brokers, an outfit in Murfreesboro, where the $32,000 was laid out in a room to undergo a decontamination process.

The bills should be restored by Wednesday, he said.