West Brownsville tax collector charged with $115,000 theft
By Mary Pickels
Published: Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013, 1:30 p.m.
West Brownsville tax collector Cindy L. Lacey was charged with theft on Wednesday, after allegedly admitting she stole more than $115,000 in borough funds.
Washington County District Attorney Eugene A. Vittone said Lacey, 58, of 619 River St., was charged following an investigation by county detectives.
Lacey was arraigned on a single felony count of theft by failure to make required disposition of funds before District Judge Joshua Kanalis of West Brownsville.
Her attorney, Herbert G. Mitchell Jr. of Hiller, could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.
County officials in September contacted a private accounting firm to audit the borough's tax collector account, Detective James A. McElhaney said in an affidavit.
The completed audit covered tax years 2005 through 2011, McElhaney said.
Results revealed a total of $115,940.36 was missing from those tax years, he said.
During the investigation, “it was determined that the only individual permitted to remove funds from the tax collector account was (Lacey),” McElhaney wrote.
Lacey served as the borough tax collector from 2002 through May 2012, he said.
While being questioned on Nov. 28, McElhaney said, Lacey provided a written statement admitting responsibility for the theft.
Lacey waived her charges to court following a preliminary hearing Wednesday, according to Kanalis' office.
She was placed in the Washington County prison in lieu of $115,000 cash bond.
Messages left with council members Wednesday were not immediately returned.
Mary Pickels is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-836-5401 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Starkey: NHL stuck in stone age
- Steelers defense’s rapid decline looks similar to that of Steel Curtain’s
- Pirates general manager Huntington is searching for right player, deal
- Driller preps for Forward decision
- Experience the best teacher for Clairton student
- Versailles fire displaces couple on Third Street
- Woodley says he’s fine with move to right side despite numbers
- McKeesport center part of Cal’s digital storytelling class project
- Penguins’ Neal apologizes, vows to be better
- Steelers notebook: Roethlisberger comes to Haley defense again
- Library tax adds to West Homestead budget