CHIPPEWA FALLS — A Lake Hallie man has been charged with stealing thousands of dollars from his employer, Rock & Tait Exteriors, over a period of several months.

James R. Pauley, 41, 4155 125th St., was charged in Chippewa County Court with theft from business and seven counts of unauthorized use of an entity’s identity information. He appeared for a court hearing June 9, where he was released on a signature bond. He will return to court today.

According to the criminal complaint, Pauley made unauthorized purchases totaling more than $5,600 between last September and May 4, 2019. Kane Rockow, co-owner of Rock & Tait, told Lake Hallie police about the thefts on May 8.

After examining their financial records, Rockow said they also learned Pauley would rent equipment on the company’s credit card, but would have money refunded onto his personal credit card when the equipment was returned.

When questioned by authorities, Pauley admitted he accidentally used the company credit card on a handful of occasions.

The county’s victim witness office has recommended Pauley be required to pay $10,742 between restitution and court fees.

Rockow submitted a victim witness statement where he asked for the maximum penalty possible in the case.

“We feel very betrayed by him,” Rockow wrote. “He has been an employee for many years, and his actions have hurt us, not only financially, but emotionally as well. We have also spent numerous hours on this incident, which takes away from daily operations.”