FAIRFIELD (CBS13) — The arrest of a Fairfield high school football coach is a reminder that clubs and organizations need to protect themselves from an all-too-common crime.

To help pay for not just football, but music, arts and other sports programs, schools seek help from booster clubs.

“Parent groups — they really do make support systems so schools can offer other things,” said Justine Fischer with the California Parent Teacher Association.

But sometimes that money is stolen by the very same parents who are raising money.

The latest accusation comes against the coach of the Vanden High football team. In the last two years, a Del Oro junior football program, a Rocklin High cheer team, and a parent-teacher group in Auburn all allegedly lost several thousand dollars to a crooked parent or coach.

But what can the groups do to stop the money from going missing?

“They need to have two people. Not one. And preferably two people that don’t particularly like each other,” said deputy district attorney Stephen Taylor. “You want people who will serve as a check and balance on each other.”

The California Parent Teacher Association serves as a model for most clubs. The 117-year-old organization has strict accounting guidelines that prevents most theft.

“I think it’s important to have a protocol of checks and balances,” Fischer said. “Two signatures on a check. Making sure who ever is receiving the bank statement isn’t necessarily auditing the books.”

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