SLC woman charged with fire department theft

Published: Jul. 24, 2023 at 11:19 AM EDT
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CANTON, New York (WWNY) - The former treasurer of the Morley fire department is accused of stealing thousands of dollars from that department.

State Police charged Cindi Perkins, 58, of the Morley-Potsdam Road, with grand larceny, 3rd degree. Perkins allegedly stole at least $16,000 - and there are “additional missing funds,” according to the New York State Comptroller’s office, which investigated the case. The alleged thefts date back to 2019.

“It was a significant amount of money,” St. Lawrence County District Attorney Gary Pasqua told 7 News.

The Comptroller’s office opened its investigation when a routine audit “uncovered financial discrepancies,” according to a statement from the Comptroller’s office.

Perkins allegedly abused the fire company’s account to make unauthorized cash withdrawals, write unauthorized checks to herself, make unauthorized personal purchases and pocket funds that were supposed to be deposited.

Some of the cash withdrawals were made at the Del Lago ($915) and Turning Stone ($163) casinos.

The purchases made on the fire company’s account included an America Girl Doll, makeup, groceries and a cable tv bill.

The Comptroller’s office is continuing to audit the fire department’s books.

“Abuse of the public’s trust is a betrayal of the office and the community which the official is supposed to serve. My office works hard to root out public corruption because it undermines the very institutions that are supposed to serve and improve our communities,” Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said in a statement.

“The defendant in this case is learning that those who try to steal from public funds get caught. I’m grateful for the assistance of the St. Lawrence County District Attorney’s Office and the New York State Police in holding the defendant accountable for her crimes.”

State police assisted the Comptroller’s office and arrested Perkins.

Perkins was arraigned in Canton town court and released after her July 11 arrest.