City discovers money transferred out of accounts; investigation turned over to state auditor’s office

Published 6:34 pm Wednesday, November 17, 2021

NATCHEZ—Mayor Dan Gibson said on late Friday he was made aware of a discrepancy in the city’s financial accounting system, which he has turned over to State Auditor Shad White’s office.

“It is important that I share something with the citizens of Natchez who look to me for transparency as their mayor,” Gibson said in a statement released at about 6 p.m. Wednesday.

“On Friday evening, Nov. 12, I was made aware of a discrepancy discovered late Friday in the financial accounting system of the City of Natchez. Sometime late Friday afternoon a questionable transfer of city funds into external accounts had taken place.

“On Saturday morning, at 9 a.m., I reported this matter to the Mississippi State Auditor’s Office, who agreed that the city should take immediate steps to address the situation.”

Gibson said he asked the Natchez Police Department to immediately begin an internal investigation.

“That investigation has now been completed and turned over to the Mississippi State Auditor. Now that it is under the Auditor’s control, the City of Natchez can make no further comment,” Gibson said.

He would not discuss how much money was transferred out of the city coffer, nor would provide any other information.

City Attorney Bryan Callaway has not responded yet to an email sent to him late morning Wednesday, seeking more information on the situation or the investigation.

This story will be updated as other information becomes available.