Former Virginia delegate charged with embezzlement

PEARISBURG, Va. — A former Virginia state legislator was charged Wednesday with embezzling from a historical society where he worked.

Joseph Yost, 35, of Pearisburg was charged with four counts of embezzling from the Giles County Historical Society, The Roanoke Times reported. Yost was indicted Tuesday and is scheduled to appear in Giles County Circuit Court on Feb. 2.

From 2012 to 2018, Yost, a Republican, served in the House of Delegates, representing the 12th District, which includes Giles County, parts of Montgomery and Pulaski counties, and Radford. Yost served as the part-time executive director of the Giles County Historical Society beginning in 2014.

The society’s board of directors learned that money was missing and unauthorized purchases were made using a debit card stated to the society – but board members “had no knowledge of a debit card being issued.” Board policy was to only withdraw money using checks signed by two board members, according to a search warrant. The investigation began in April.

Josh Elrod, the commonwealth’s attorney for Buena Vista, has been appointed as a special prosecutor for the case.

Attorney Chris Tuck said Yost would have no comment on the indictments.

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