by: Mike Petchenik Updated:
A Sandy Springs woman facing charges she bilked her former employer out of nearly $1 million is now claiming a stranger attacked her outside her home.
In late November, police arrested Amy Trifilo, 39, on charges she opened credit cards linked to her one-time boss’ personal and business accounts.
“He was changing some of his personal addresses on his accounts and discovered he had an outstanding bill on a credit card he wasn't familiar with,” Sandy Springs police Capt. Steve Rose told Channel 2’s Mike Petchenik. “The suspect in this case had access to credit cards, had access to personal information for the victim and the company."
According to a federal lawsuit filed last week by Kevin Engle, who co-founded Engle Martin Associates on Roswell Road, Trifilo is alleged to have spent Engle’s money “to finance a lavish lifestyle of late night partying, fancy cars, an expensive home, and a rock star party cruise.”
In one case, Engle’s lawsuit claims Trifilo spent nearly $5,000 to take a celebrity cruise with musician Kid Rock last April.
“We believe during that time she spent a lot of money unauthorized and fraudulently, and it's adding up to be quite a total,” said Rose.
On Dec. 23, a police report obtained by Petchenik alleges Trifilo was attacked by a man outside her Glenridge Drive townhome while she was out walking her dog.
“He pulled a weapon on her and said something to the effect of ‘Don't make me come back,’” said Rose.
The report said Trifilo believed the attack was related to her arrest, and police said they were investigating whether there was a link.
An attorney for Engle told Petchenik his client was unaware of the assault until he was contacted by Petchenik. Richard Rice said Engle denies any involvement in the assault.
In an e-mailed statement, Rice wrote:
“Amy Shaffer Trifilo stole hundreds of thousands of dollars from Kevin Engle. While stealing from Mr. Engle, it appears that Ms. Trifilo also stole thousands of dollars from her friends. Mr. Engle has filed a criminal complaint and also filed a federal lawsuit against Ms. Trifilo in order to expose what she has done and to get back what she stole from him. Mr. Engle is happy to hear that she was not harmed and hopes that the police arrest the assailant quickly.”
Trifilo wouldn’t answer the door when Petchenik went to her townhome for comment, but she did deny any wrongdoing.