The former director of Happiness Hill Christian Home for girls on Deemer Road and his wife were charged with embezzlement after $210,313.36 was reported missing following a state audit, the authorities said.

Jack High, 69, of 11901 Road 505,  and Karen Lynn High, 67, same address, were charged with taking the money from the Christian home, a mission of Lighthouse Baptist Church in Lafayette, Ind. 

High was director of Happiness Hill and his wife was secretary/treasurer, Sheriff Tommy Waddell said.

They are no longer employed by the home, which is now directed by John and Anna Rush.

While a routine state audit revealed $210,313.36 in missing funds, Waddell said a separate in-house audit showed $383,251.05.

Sheriff Investigator Ralph Sciple said he was notified of the missing funds on March 8 by William Murdock, chairman of the board of Lighthouse Baptist Church. The Highs were arrested on April 21.

The Highs were released from jail on bonds.

Happiness Hill was founded in 1991 by Raymond and Kaye Palmer. It is a home for young ladies between the ages of 13-17 who want and are willing to receive help.

According to their website, many of the young ladies have been abused, neglected and unwanted.  Some may be caught up in alcohol, drugs, being with the wrong crowd, rebellion and some may just have no one to care for them, the website said.

Among the home’s financial supporting ministries in this area are Arlington, Calvary and Enon Baptist churches and First Baptist Church of Union and Greenland Baptist Church of Union.

A home for boys was later opened called the Solid Rock Boy’s Home.

The two homes are located within five miles of each other on Road 505, better known as Deemer Road.