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updated: 6/1/2011 9:08 PM

Glen Ellyn firefighter indicted in $260,000 theft

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  • David Garmoe

      David Garmoe

 

A DuPage County grand jury has indicted a veteran Glen Ellyn firefighter accused of stealing more than $260,000 from the village's volunteer fire department while acting as its treasurer, authorities said Wednesday.

David Garmoe, 54, of the 600 block of Prairie Avenue, Glen Ellyn, was indicted Tuesday on charges of theft, continuing a financial crimes enterprise, financial institution fraud, money laundering and forgery. He could be sentenced to four to 15 years in prison, or probation, if convicted of the most serious offense, prosecutors said.

The felony indictment alleges Garmoe "altered accounting records, presented fraudulent invoices for payment, diverted funds to personal accounts, and misrepresented expenses" to the Glen Ellyn Volunteer Fire Company executive board on numerous occasions since April 2004. He is accused of taking more than $260,000, including at least three thefts that took place within one eight-month period, according to the indictment.

Authorities said an investigation touched off by a suspicious purchasing order in February uncovered nearly 90 fraudulent transactions involving Garmoe, a 26-year veteran who was named a lieutenant just last year.

He is accused of diverting more than $20,000 in checks to Fireground Supply, a West Chicago-based equipment company he helped run, and spending some of the money to have his own driveway paved in concrete.

Authorities said Garmoe volunteered for 20 years as treasurer of the fire company, which relies on a combination of village funding, donations and proceeds from a pair of special tax districts in unincorporated areas near Glen Ellyn to operate.

At a hearing on preliminary charges last month, Garmoe was identified by his attorney as an Eagle Scout and longtime community volunteer who is "looking forward to his day in court." Defense attorney Matt Sperry could not immediately be reached Wednesday for comment on the indictment.

Fire company spokesman Craig Eldridge said Garmoe has been placed on administrative leave but does not collect a paycheck because his position is volunteer.

"Since his arrest and indictment, it's all in the hands of the state's attorney," Eldridge said.

Garmoe remains free on a $50,000 cash bond and is scheduled to appear in front of Judge Daniel Guerin for arraignment on June 6.

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