Local News

A children's hospital official in central Illinois accused of embezzling $500,000 from the institution since 2008 didn't steal money received as charitable donations, hospital officials said.

According to reports, St. John's Children's Hospital executive director Margaret "Peggy" Curtin, 55, was released from the Sangamon County Jail on bond Wednesday after being charged with felony theft Tuesday. Sangamon County State's Attorney John Milhiser said $100,000 in cash was paid for her release after a judge set bond at $1 million on Tuesday.

Hospital spokesman Brian Reardon said there is no indication that donated funds were misused. The nonprofit Friends of St. John's Foundation raises money to support the children's hospital and other programs.

Reardon declined to comment on which of the hospital's sources of revenue may be involved in Curtin's case, citing the ongoing investigation. She has been suspended without pay, he said Tuesday.

Bev Neisler, chief development officer of the Friends of St. John's Foundation, said Curtin never had access to donations because the children's hospital and the foundations are separate. She said she has been reassuring donors that their gifts weren't misused.

Local Weather