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Former Chaney High baseball coach stole team equipment, charge alleges



Published: Tue, September 21, 2010 @ 12:08 a.m.

photo

Jason Savage

By Denise Dick

By DENISE DICK

denise_dick@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

The Chaney High School Cowboys baseball team might have stolen a few bases en route to an 8-15 record last spring.

The team’s former coach stands accused of stealing much more, however.

Jason Savage, 27, of Massillon, who was the coach last season, was indicted July 1 by a Mahoning County grand jury on a felony theft charge. He is accused of taking school sports equipment and selling it.

“He was caught stealing equipment and other valuables from Chaney, and so not only was he terminated, but he was prosecuted,” said Anthony Catale, school board president.

In late May, the school’s principal reported to city police many thefts during the previous several months from the school’s locked storage room in the gym. There were no signs of forced entry, according to a police report, indicating that “whoever is taking the equipment has keys.”

Some of the items were seen at Play It Again Sports in Boardman, police said.

An arrest report says that during a June 1 taped interview with police, Savage acknowledged taking the property from the school and selling it. The value of what was taken exceeded $8,000.

If convicted of the fourth-degree felony charge, the maximum penalty Savage could face is 18 months in prison.

Savage’s attorney, Paul Conn, couldn’t be reached for comment.

Michael McBride, the assistant Mahoning County prosecutor assigned to the case, didn’t return phone calls Monday or last week.

The allegations came as a surprise, Catale said, because the district had been hearing a lot of good things about the coach.

Savage, who coached for only one season, was employed on a one-year supplemental contract. He was not a school district teacher or staff member.

Catale said he hopes that when the case is resolved, the district will be able to recoup some of the value of what was taken.

“We would hope any of the equipment the district purchased — that he would have to pay it back,” he said.

All individuals employed by the district through supplemental contracts must first pass background fingerprint checks by both the FBI and the state Bureau of Identification and Investigation as well as pass a drug test, Catale said.

That’s board policy as well as a requirement from the Ohio Department of Education, he said.

No changes in policy are planned in light of the charge against the former coach.

“All of them are screened thoroughly to begin with,” Catale said.


Comments

1BiggD357(9 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

This guy needs beaten with a baseball bat!

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2southsidedave(4780 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

Scum that steals from kids should be put away for a long time. The prison system will take care of him, and I don't mean that in a good way!

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3DOLE2(594 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

Fits right into Y-Town ! His next step,local politics.

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4TB(1167 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

garnish his wages if he can't pay it back. what a dirtbag

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5Teacher12(27 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

Typical for this board of education!!!!!

Over the last 10 to 15 years, the district's current and former AD's have created a climate that drives good young coaches out of the district. They had this bright idea if we can get around the teachers contract that gives teachers (who know and have a vested interest in the students) first rights to all extracurricular contracts, the best and the brightest coaches like Coach 'K', Joe Torre, or Bill Cowher will come running. What its really done is let the scum in from the bottom of the rusty barrel.

Look out Canfield, you sports programs could be next!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! For your kids sake, I hope not!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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6TB(1167 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

Maybe the focus shouldn't be on athletics at all

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7londontown(1 comment)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

The former Chaney baseball coach in spite of the theft,had never taken any of the screenings mention in this article.So why in the world was he coaching in the first place?
Youngstown city Schools really dropped the ball on this. Civil suit is likly to come on this!

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