• September 2014: Anson Town Administrative Assistant Triss Smith, hired in May, implements a computer system for recording excise taxes that requires money be deposited daily into town accounts.

• December 2014: Smith finds a $78,645 discrepancy between the amount of money Viles had reported collecting and the amount actually collected for the year.

• January 2015: Town officials ask Purdy Powers & Co. to perform an audit, which confirms $76,686 unaccounted for.

• February 2015: Auditor Richard Emerson of Purdy & Powers has Viles show him and selectmen Chairman Arnold Luce how she processes excise tax receipts. As shortfalls are revealed, Viles says, “I’m the tax collector. It’s my responsibility and I’ll pay it back.” When the shortfall hits $50,000, Emerson stops the meeting and advises Viles to hire an attorney.

• March 8, 2015: Residents at Anson’s Town Meeting are told about $77,000 is missing from the town’s accounts. Selectmen say the probe is just beginning, and there is no evidence of wrongdoing and no criminal investigation.

• March 18, 2015: Selectmen meet in executive session to discuss a personnel issue related to the $77,000 discrepancy. Viles tells the Morning Sentinel, “We’re still trying to figure out what’s going on.”

• April 16, 2015: Maine State Police seize $58,500 in cash from Viles’ home.

• May 19, 2015: Administrative Assistant Triss Smith resigns less than a year after taking the post. The atmosphere at the Town Office “was getting hard to be in,” she testified at trial.

• June 9, 2015: A letter to the town from Purdy Powers & Co. says there is a difference of $327,956 in the amount of excise tax collected and the amount deposited into the town’s checking account from 2012 through September 2014.

• July 13, 2015: Anson selectmen say they’re considering changing the position of tax collector from elective to appointive in the midst of the criminal investigation into the missing money. Selectmen can’t remove Viles from office or limit her duties because she is an elected official. Viles’ request that the $58,500 seized from her home be returned is rejected by the state attorney general.

• July 22, 2015: Purdy Powers & Co. tells the town there’s a shortfall of $110,756 in the amount of excise tax collected in 2011 and the amount deposited, bringing the total missing over four years to $438,712.

• Aug. 10, 2015: The town files a civil lawsuit in Somerset County Superior Court against Viles, alleging that she misappropriated more than $430,000 in excise tax money. Viles, meanwhile, continues to work at the Town Office as tax collector.

• Sept. 3, 2015: Viles is indicted by a Somerset County grand jury on charges of theft, failure to pay Maine state income tax on six counts, failure to make and file Maine state income tax returns on five counts and tampering with public records.

• Sept. 10, 2015: Viles resigns as tax collector after the Maine Municipal Association, which insures the town, said it will not provide bonding for any money she handles.

• Sept. 17, 2015: Viles pleads not guilty to 13 counts related to the missing money. Justice Robert Mullen sets bail at $10,000 unsecured and says Viles is forbidden to enter the Town Office as tax collector.

• October 2015: Viles’ trial, scheduled to begin Nov. 2, is postponed so her attorney, Walter McKee, can deal with the “voluminous” information in the case.

• Nov. 2, 2015: Anson voters overwhelmingly agree to make tax collector an appointive position and also approve an ordinance enabling them to recall elected officials.

• Dec. 10, 2015: Voters agree at a special town meeting to use some of the insurance money the town received as reimbursement for theft losses to pay for unanticipated legal and audit fees resulting from the case.

• Feb. 10, 2016: Viles’ trial is set to begin June 20.

• June 15, 2016: A jury of seven women and eight men is picked in Somerset County Superior Court for the trial, set to begin the next week.

• June 20, 2016: As the trial begins, Assistant Attorney General Leanne Robbin, in opening statements, says Viles was ‘sort of a free-range chicken’ who stole about $100,000 a year from 2010 to 2014; McKee says investigators unfairly targeted Viles without looking at other possibilities.

• June 22, 2016: Viles is found guilty on all charges.

• Sept. 2, 2016: Viles is sentenced to eight years in prison, to serve five with three years of probation and ordered to pay $566,257 in restitution for the theft. She’s also sentenced to nine months, concurrent, on the 12 fraud charges. The sentences is stayed pending an appeal on $50,000 surety bail. She maintains her innocence and vows to fight to clear her name “as long as I am breathing.”

Information from police affidavits, Morning Sentinel archives and trial testimony.