Published: Saturday, June 16, 2007
Hubbard Little League official charged with theft
The treasurer is charged with felony theft of at least $17,000 in football team funds.
HUBBARD The treasurer of a little league football team here is accused of stealing thousands of dollars in team money, but other team officials are determined to see the young people take the field this summer.
According to police reports, Susan Hettrick, 37, of Buena Vista Road, transferred more than $17,000 from the Hubbard Little Eagles savings account to her personal account. Officials are not yet sure of the exact dollar amount missing from the team's account.
Police say Hettrick made a series of transfers from the account between March 2006 and May 2007. She is charged with felony theft and is in the Hubbard City Jail waiting to be arraigned in Girard Municipal Court on Monday.
According to Sgt. James Taafe, team officials became nervous when Hettrick repeatedly failed to hand over keys to a post office box held by the team or disclose documents detailing the team's financial position. Team officials then took the matter to police.
Police officers, according to Taafe, interviewed Hettrick, who told officers that she used the money to pay for medical expenses. Police evidence, he said, shows the money may have been used to pay for other personal expenses.
Team president Edgar Williams said the loss of money comes at a time when the team was ready to pay insurance and other bills in preparation for another football season.
"This is very devastating," he said. "It is a large loss, but we have a spaghetti dinner coming up and we hope that will generate enough money to pay certain bills, such as our insurance, and buy new game balls."
Williams said he and other team officials are now speaking with an accountant to explore other methods of keeping the books that would prevent a similar theft in the future. He said parents should still have faith in the team.
"My entire board was blindsided by this, but we are going to try and make sure it doesn't happen again," he said. "Just because there was one bad apple doesn't make us all bad. We are here for the kids."
Williams said team officials are hoping that Hettrick is made to pay back the missing money, but are determined to see the kids play this summer. "I am going to see to it that these kids play football.That is my job as team president," he said.