Skip to comments.Disgraced ex-teacher stole nonprofit funds
Posted on 08/23/2005 2:59:11 PM PDT by Cagey
MIDDLESEX COUNTY Former East Brunswick councilman, disgraced teacher and local historian Richard Walling has pleaded guilty to theft in connection with checks from The Friends of Monmouth Battlefield that he wrote for eyeglasses, phone bills and to himself, authorities said.
Walling, 48, served as the chief executive officer of the Monmouth County-based volunteer, nonprofit group when he stole $32,500 from it between August 2003 and February, authorities said.
In exchange for his guilty plea, the state has agreed to drop a forgery charge and recommend probation instead of jail, said Brian Gillet, assistant Middlesex County prosecutor. Just one of the two original charges exposed Walling to up to five years in prison.
His sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 21 before Superior Court Judge Frederick DeVesa, sitting in New Brunswick.
Walling, who waived his right to have a grand jury decide whether there was enough evidence to support the charges, has also agreed to full restitution.
The guilty plea follows another case in which Walling was accused of harassing a 17-year-old female student from the East Brunswick Campus of the Middlesex County Vocational and Technical Schools by allegedly sending 17 "sexual and annoying" text messages to her cell phone. According to a police report, Walling admitted taking the student to a movie,
buying her gifts and helping with a traffic summons by speaking to a prosecutor on her behalf.
In November, Walling, a teacher at the school, pleaded guilty to a downgraded disorderly conduct charge in the harassment case. He agreed to give up his teaching license and was ordered to undergo psychological evaluation. He was also fined $500.
Walling, the son of the late East Brunswick Mayor Jean Walling, was a member of the East Brunswick Township Council and Zoning Board.
As the chief executive officer of Friends of Monmouth Battlefield, Walling was in charge of fundraising and other financial duties, Gillet said.
The group's mission includes battlefield preservation, public education and sponsorship of re-enactments, he said.
Walling would transfer money from the organization's account to other education programs that required only his signature and then wrote checks to cover personal expenses, such as eye doctor bills, Gillet said.
The Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office initiated an investigation earlier this year when possible fundraising irregularities came to light during an unrelated investigation, he said.
Walling did not return messages left at his home yesterday.
His attorney, Cara Migliaccio of the Office of the Public Defender in New Brunswick, was unable to be reached.
He looks like he needs another cheeseburger...
I don't think so Tim.
Probably will be a light sentence, from what I was told, you usually have to steal more than $70 K to get jail time.
I am pretty certain all the members of the Friends of Monmouth Battlefield, are unpaid volunteers.
You are probably right.
Some good hopefully will come out of all this mess. The Friends have Jim Raleigh in charge now. He is a good man who cares greatly about the history of NJ and Monmouth Battlefield. I think the organization is in good hands.
I'd change that to; New Jersey has more horses ass per square mile than any other U.S. state
I grew up there, I can say that! No offense to you... :-O
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