The LeRoy Park District Board announced it has uncovered accounting irregularities at its LeRoy Replex fitness center in LeRoy, Illinois, prompting the dismissal of one employee and a formal investigation by the local sheriff's department.

According to a Dec. 7 statement, board members found “credible evidence of improper and unauthorized use of Replex financial funds” within the last 24 hours. One unnamed employee, apparently a suspect, was immediately fired. The board then notified the McLean County Sheriff's Department, the LeRoy Police Department and the City of LeRoy.

The sheriff's department’s investigation will “determine whether more than one individual may have been involved,” the board’s statement said.

An independent firm also will conduct a forensic audit of all LeRoy Replex’s financials. Board members believe a “significant amount of funds” may have been embezzled, but the exact amount is currently unknown. Board members are in the process of determining whether or not its insurance policies will mitigate any financial loss.

“The Board was greatly disappointed to learn of these events on Dec. 6 and is cognizant of the public’s desire for full disclosure and transparency,” the statement said. “It is the intention of the Board to fully disclose detailed information to the public as it becomes available.

“On the advice of legal counsel, during the initial phases of the law enforcement investigation, the Board will not be making public statements about this matter. Law enforcement officials do not want the investigation compromised by premature statements made by the Board.”

LeRoy Replex has endured organizational unrest and even calls for closure since opening more than seven years ago, according to Pantagraph.com. The facility offers equipment rooms, personal training, swimming pools and a youth soccer program.