ANTIOCH -- The president of a parent-teacher organization at an Antioch elementary school has been arrested after police say she used her position to steal thousands of dollars.

Police arrested Alisa Russo, 31, the president of the Fremont Elementary School PTO, Friday on suspicion of felony embezzlement, Antioch police Sgt. Tony Morefield said. She is accused of stealing more than $10,000 in funds from the PTO.

The case came to light when Fremont Elementary School Principal Jason Larson was alerted that money was missing, Morefield said.

"She has admitted to a portion of it," Morefield said. "She has not admitted to all of it."

Larson said questions came to light after a recent PTO fundraiser, when boxes of chocolate bars were sold. The PTO's funds after the fundraiser revealed they were lower than anticipated.

The PTO has not met since the arrest, so officially, Russo remains the president. But Larson said all activities and functions by the organization have been suspended indefinitely pending outcome of the case.

Fremont Elementary School is a Title I school, meaning it receives financial assistance from the federal government. Larson said 96.6 percent of the students receive free breakfast and lunch.

The PTO raises money for school activities such as field trips and dances, and also was expected to help with graduation activities.


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"I'm disappointed for the staff and the kids," he said of Russo's arrest. "For obvious reasons."

Russo has been the school's PTO president since November. A call to a number listed for her was not returned.

Rick Hurd covers breaking news. Contact him at 925-945-4789 and follow him at Twitter.com/3rdERH.