Pennsylvania Department of State, Local Law Enforcement Combine Efforts to Nab Treasurer in $64,000 Theft

Aug 02, 2011, 13:30 ET from Pennsylvania Department of State

HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 2, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Pennsylvania Department of State, in cooperation with the Dauphin County District Attorney's office and the Swatara Township Police Department, today announced the successful resolution of a theft case against the treasurer of a Steelton volunteer fire company.

Over a three-year period starting in 2007, Dawn Bower, the former treasurer of the former Goodwill Fire Company, wrote 74 checks made payable to herself, totaling $64,271. Bower has pled guilty to two felony charges of theft and two misdemeanor counts of prohibited acts. She is scheduled to be sentenced Aug. 18.

The Goodwill Fire Company has since merged with Citizens Fire Company of Oberlin to form the Swatara Township Volunteer Fire Department.

"This is a great example of state, county, and local agencies cooperating to protect the public," Secretary of the Commonwealth Carol Aichele said. "The Department of State's Bureau of Charitable Organizations began investigating the missing funds, following a tip from Swatara Township Police."

"We cannot stop every individual with dishonest intentions, but we can show others that by working together, justice will be done," Swatara Township Police Chief Jason Umberger added.

In addition to pleading guilty, Bower has already signed a consent agreement with the Department of State prohibiting her from assuming any position in any charitable organization involving the solicitation, collection, or expenditure of contributions. This agreement also requires Bower to work with the Dauphin County District Attorney's Office to repay the stolen money.

"Regrettably, this is not an isolated incident," said Dauphin County District Attorney Ed Marsico. "We have unfortunately seen an uptick in cases similar to this, and we continue to urge organizations to make sure they have checks and balances in place to prevent such occurrences."  

Media contact: Nick Winkler or Ron Ruman, 717-783-1621

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of State