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A Lake County woman has been charged with 28 counts of wire fraud for embezzling more than $65,000 from a statewide special education organization in 2017.

Shannon Marie O'Brien Murphy pleaded not guilty Wednesday to all 28 counts in U.S. District Court in Missoula. 

According to the indictment filed on Nov. 7, Murphy, treasurer of the Montana Council for Exceptional Children, began writing checks to herself drawn from the organization's checking account in February 2017.

Charging documents show 23 of the 28 transactions in which Murphy transferred funds to her own account, in amounts between $300 and $8,900. Other transactions show Murphy made purchases for personal expenses directly from the Council for Exceptional Children's account to places like hotels and gas stations.

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The transactions prosecutors included in charging documents span from Feb. 16, 2017, to Oct. 13 of the same year. 

An email to the Montana Council for Exceptional Children president seeking comment was not returned late Wednesday. It wasn't immediately clear how long Murphy had served as treasurer for the organization.

Murphy's next hearing has been scheduled for Dec. 11 in U.S. District Court in Missoula before Chief District Judge Dana Christensen.

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