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Sallie Rohrbach Story: Lessons for Auditors and Fraud Examiners

NCJ Number
Journal of Financial Crime Volume: 18 Issue: 1 Dated: 2011 Pages: 93-104
Frank S. Perri; Richard G. Brody
Date Published
12 pages
This article examines the murder case of North Carolina State insurance auditor Sallie Rohrbach in order to profile "red-collar" criminals, a sub-group of white-collar criminals who resort to violence in order to prevent their fraud schemes from being detected and reported (Perri and Lichtenwald, 2007; Brody and Kiehl, 2010).
This offender profile is the article's focus because the author believes that one of the common perceptions of white-collar criminals held by both the public and anti-fraud professionals is that they are nonviolent. This article cites research and the Sallie Rohrbach case to make the point that regardless of gender, white-collar criminals have committed violent acts, including murder, in order to avoid detection and preserve the money and lifestyle gained from their crimes. White-collar offenders, i.e., those who commit crimes through opportunities presented by their legitimate work, do not compose a homogeneous group of offenders regarding offending patterns, level of deviance, attitudes toward crime, or social identity. In some cases, they are similar to "street" criminals and those involved in organized crime in manifesting exploitative, remorseless, psychopathic traits. An outline of the warning signs that a person may be or become a "red-collar" criminal encompasses physical signs, intimidating behaviors, negative personality traits, and verbal behaviors. Strategies suggested for reducing the risk of workplace violence are as follows: written policies that address the issue of what is appropriate and inappropriate behavior, encouraging the reporting of disturbing incidents, assuring that no reprisals will be made against employees who report concerns, and outlining procedures for investigating incidents. Precautions are also suggested for auditors, forensic accountants, and fraud investigators in order to reduce their risk for victimization by those being investigated. 37 references