Girl Scout leader tells parents: 'I don't have the money'

Ousted Seminole County scout volunteer charged with grand theft


SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. – A  Girl Scout leader accused of stealing hundreds of dollars in dues, funds and cookies from Brownie Troop 98 of Seminole County denies the allegations against her are true.

Jillian Zawacki, who volunteered for the Girl Scouts in Seminole County  for several years, is charged with grand theft in connection with $2,800 in cash and cookies that sheriff’s detectives say are unaccounted for.

The co-leader of Troop 98, who asked not to be identified, told WKMG-TV she tried on several occasions to have her name added to the account but Zawacki always “had an excuse” to avoid going to the bank to sign the proper documents.

After  viewing  bank security video of Zawacki completing a transfer of funds into her account from the Scouts' account last summer, the co-leader said  it was obvious her intentions were “cold-hearted."

“The money is gone from Troop 98. She’s the only one who had access to the account,” she said.

According to the troop co-leader, the 12 girls ages 6 and 7 at the time were hoping to use the funds collected in 2014 and 2015 for a camping outing at Disney World.

Zawacki met with parents Girl Scout Council members  but refused to offer any explanation.

Jodi Shadron, who trained Zawacki along with dozens of other troop leaders, said she joined parents in what amounted to an impromptu interrogation.

She says Zawacki was evasive at best. 

“Her response to the parents and myself over and over was I don’t have the money, not what happened to the money, not where is the money, and they (questions) were asked point-blank," Shadron said.
“She simply said; I'I don’t have it,'” Shadron said.

Girl Scouts of Citrus CEO Maryann Barry filed a criminal complaint with sheriff’s detectives after reviewing the bank records.

“What bothered us the most," Barry said, "was the transfer of funds from the troop account to the personal account.”

Zawacki pleaded not guilty to the charges on April 6 and is free on bond.

She has refused several requests by  Seminole Magazine for comment.

Zawacki’s  husband would only say the charges weren’t true when confronted outside of their Casselberry home.

A trial date has not been set.

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