By Jordan Cohen
Weathersfield Township investigators say the amount of money purportedly stolen by a former Mineral Ridge firefighter from a volunteer fund is significantly higher than the original estimate.
“We’ve determined the figure is $29,311,” said Joseph Consiglio, Weathersfield police chief, on Friday. Police had estimated the amount at $22,000 when they filed a theft charge against Timothy Larman, 31, of Williamson Street, Mineral Ridge, earlier this month.
Larman was scheduled to have a preliminary hearing Thursday in Niles Municipal Court, but moments before the hearing was to begin, his attorney waived the proceeding, and Larman was ordered bound over to the Trumbull County grand jury. He remains free on $3,500 bond.
Consiglio said the money was taken from the Mineral Ridge Volunteer Fire Department Company Inc., a private fund that is maintained to support the Weathersfield Township Fire Department.
The police chief said the fund consists of revenue from fundraising efforts and private donations. “No taxpayer dollars were involved,” Consiglio said.
Police were brought into the investigation after the organization president received a notice that the fund’s checking account had been overdrawn by $1,900.
“Larman had been writing checks to himself,” Consiglio said. “It started last March and continued until the bank reported the overdraft on Aug. 6.”
Larman, who had been a Mineral Ridge volunteer, resigned from the department after police filed the theft charge against him.
Consiglio said none of the missing money has been recovered.