Sat Mar 3, 2018 – 7:30 pm | Domenico’s
All The Queen’s Horses
Directed by Kelly Richmond Pope
USA | 71 in | 2017
As the comptroller and treasurer, Crundwell embezzled $53.7 million of the city’s money and went undetected for over twenty years. All the while, Dixon struggled to meet its debt obligations, forcing the city to make painful service cuts and layoffs, and to forgo raises for its municipal employees for more than a decade. Her crime marked the single largest municipal fraud in United States history.
The amount she stole in relation to the city’s annual budget, the fact that a city native and pillar of the community could so callously calculate a community-ruining scam, and the utter frivolousness the money was spent on, all combine to create a riveting story in and of itself. Her motivations may well remain a mystery but All the Queen’s Horses is not so much about the why; it’s about the how.
How could the treasurer of an Illinois town with an annual budget of $6 million to $8 million embezzle nearly $54 million over two decades? How could such a scam go undetected in annual audits by two independent accounting firms and in annual audit reviews by state regulators? How did local residents not become suspicious by Crundwell’s extravagant wealth? How has the city suffered as a result, and how will it rebuild and recover? These and many other questions will be addressed in the film.