The former clerk-treasurer for the Village of Wolcott in Wayne County stole $68,000 from taxpayers over a four-year period, Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said today.
State Police charged Melanie DeBadts, 35, with one count of grand larceny in the second degree, a felony, and 106 counts of falsifying business records in the first degree, also a felony.
“This clerk-treasurer had a creative imagination when it came to coming up with ways to steal taxpayer monies,” DiNapoli said in a statement. “Thankfully, my office’s auditors were able to expose this fraud and, with the help of State Police, bring this individual to justice.”
She was arraigned yesterday and released on her own recognizance. She is scheduled to appear in Wolcott Village Court on June 7.
DiNapoli said that last September, Wolcott Mayor Gary Baker and village officials conducted his office about extra payroll checks she cut for herself during the 2010-11 fiscal year. Auditors found that records were altered and the unauthorized disbursements were deleted.
But the findings only came after more than four years of the alleged scam.
DiNapoli said DeBadts was allegedly giving herself extra pay, overtime, health insurance buyouts, unearned leave and other payments.