Trumbull prosecutor asks judge to refuse expungement in Liberty school case

Staff report


The Trumbull County Prosecutor’s Office has asked a judge to deny expunging the criminal record of Marcia P. Cohen, who stole $4,888 starting in 2004 while working as a secretary for Liberty High School.

Cohen was fired from the job, repaid the money and was sentenced in 2008 to five days in the county jail. She also has served five years’ probation.

Cohen has requested her record be expunged.

Chris Becker, an assistant county prosecutor, filed a memorandum with Judge Peter Kontos asking that her record not be expunged because of the potential that possible future employers will not know of her previous illegal conduct.

Becker said Cohen, 60, took $370 from funds raised by high-school students for the Pennies for Patients leukemia and lymphoma fundraiser, $954 from fees she collected from students for high-school transcripts to be sent to various colleges and universities, and $3,554 paid by junior-class members for prom tickets.

Becker said records should be expunged only if there is no “legitimate governmental need to maintain those records.”

But “there is no greater ‘legitimate governmental need’ than alerting and notifying any and all governmental agencies that a former governmental employee cannot be trusted with public money,” Becker wrote.

He said Cohen’s case is “even more egregious than most because not only did [Cohen] use her position in government to steal money, but she stole the money from high-school students.”

No hearing date has been scheduled on Cohen’s request.

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