School "lunch ladies" accused of stealing $94K to gamble

Stacey Shipley, one of two Pa. "lunch ladies" accused of stealing nearly $94,000 from the Charleroi School District, seen leaving court on Monday, Feb. 25, 2013.

(CBS) PITTSBURGH - Police say two Pennsylvania women who work as school "lunch ladies" stole nearly $94,000 from their school in order to gamble, CBS Pittsburgh reports.

The women, who were once described as sweet, and hard working, were referred to as gambling-addicted criminals in court Monday. According to the station, prosecutors said Stacey Shipley and Sheila Cook were willing to steal from Charleroi School in order to play the slot machines at the Meadows Racetrack & Casino.

Shipley and Cook reportedly said in court that they intend to pay back every cent of the money they allegedly stole. They are both charged with theft and their lawyers are hoping to work out a restitution arrangement and probation agreement before the case goes to trial, CBS Pittsburgh reports.

Defense attorney Ray Amatangelo says his client, Stacey Shipley, has a gambling problem.

"She's in Gamblers Anonymous. She put herself on the no entry list at the Meadows. She does have another job and fully intends on stepping up to the plate and making restitution," Amatangelo said, according to the station.

Shipley and Cook worked in the Charleroi school cafeteria for more than eight years. An audit reportedly determined nearly $94,000 of lunch money was missing.