Cumberland Times-News

March 21, 2013

3 city employees indicted on misdemeanor theft charges

Cumberland Times-News

— CUMBERLAND — Three city employees have been indicted by the Allegany County grand jury on misdemeanor theft charges.

State’s Attorney Michael O. Twigg announced the indictments Thursday. The grand jury returned the indictments the previous day.

John Chapman was indicted on one count each of theft less than $1,000 and conspiracy to commit theft less than $1,000.

Rodney Long and Troy Zembower were both indicted on one count of theft less than $1,000.

Twigg said the charges are associated with the defendants’ employment with the city of Cumberland.

Chapman serves as the city’s assistant director of public works for maintenance and Long and Zembower are mechanics in the public works department, according to City Administrator Jeff Rhodes.

Rhodes declined to comment on the employment status of all three men on Thursday since it was a personnel matter.

Rhodes also said the city has taken appropriate administrative action in accordance with the city’s policies and procedures pending the outcome of the investigation.  

The case that led to the charges was investigated by the C3I unit and Maryland State Police.

In a previous news release to the Times-News, a C3I spokesman said, “The allegations came to light after review of invoices for purchase made for the city garage and several discrepancies were discovered.”

Twigg said all three defendants will be given trial dates in Allegany County Circuit Court in the near future.

Under Maryland law, conviction of the misdemeanor charge of theft less than $1,000 carries a maximum penalty of 18 months in jail and/or a fine of up to $500.

The same penalty applies to conviction of the charge of conspiracy to commit theft under $1,000.