Federal agents today began cataloging and photographing hundreds of horses on a farm owned by Rita Crundwell, the former Dixon comptroller accused of stealing 53 million dollars from the city.
Agents descended on a horse farm Crundwell owns as Crundwell refused to answer questions from Fox Chicago's Craig Wall.
She sped away with her long-time boyfriend. They almost got rear-ended by pulling dangerously into traffic.
On Tuesday, the federal government indicted the long-time comptroller of Dixon and they say she confessed to the fraud which has grown to 53 million dollars.
Wednesday, U.S. Marshalls were making sure nothing happens to the prized horses that might mean millions for dollars for the taxpayers of Dixon.
Federal agents spent hours taking stock of about 300 quarter horses kept on Crundwell's properties in Dixon.
An Equine expert says Crundwell owns at least 50 championship horses and several of them may be worth $250 to $500 thousand dollars a piece.
The government is seeking to seize a total of 311 horses, including one called "Have faith in Money."
They are also going after Crundwell's farm and gated house as well as other property and vehicles which she is alleged to have purchased with 53 million in embezzled money.
James Dixon, who was Mayor of Dixon from 1983-1990, told us "People are amazed that she would have done anything like that, very upset that she would have held our community in such contempt that she would just take the money right out of pockets."
Crundwell was appointed just before Dixon took office and is accused of starting her pilfering scheme around the time he left… and continuing it for the next 22 years.
The current mayor has ordered a complete investigation of city hall.
Crundwell, Dixon says, was skimming sales tax dollars
The feds say she set up a secret account and funneled the money there to pay for her lavish lifestyle. People aren't sure how much of their money will get returned.
Dixon says, "We'll get some of the money back, but I can't believe we'll get it all back."