Firemen's Association addresses missing money
South Thomaston — The former officers of the South Thomaston Firemen's Association sent a letter to the Attorney General's office answering questions about the missing money that was supposed to be turned over to the town for purchase of a fire truck.
Bank records show the last person known to possess the missing South Thomaston Firemen's Association money, totaling more than $14,000, was former Fire Chief Wayne A. Brown, according to town Administrative Assistant John Spear in previous statements.
In the letter addressed to Attorney General Janet Mills, the association states Brown was not authorized to withdraw or handle the funds.
"We understand that Detective James Gioia, of the Investigations Division of your office, is currently investigating the whereabouts of approximately $15,000 of South Thomaston Firemen’s Association funds that are currently missing," said Former Association President David J. Elwell.
To help in the investigation, the association's former members offered the following information:
"In 2007, the South Thomaston Fireman’s Association … met and voted to dissolve.
"… Under the dissolution plan all of the association’s monies were to be donated to the town of South Thomaston, for the purpose of assisting with the purchase of a class A pumper fire truck.
"To date the association’s monies have not been donated to the town of South Thomaston as those association members with physical access to the funds' bank accounts have, to date, refused to do so.
"It was reported at the April 30, 2014, South Thomaston selectboard meeting, and subsequently in the local media, that documentation recently came to light indicating that on July 15, 2010, Wayne A. Brown personally withdrew all of the association’s funds, $14,783.48, from Camden National Bank.
"Wayne A. Brown, although a former association member, was not an officer of the association and did not have any authority from the Association to withdraw the funds or to assume custody of them.
"We respectfully request that you take whatever action you deem advisable to insure the association’s funds are turned over to the town of South Thomaston, in accordance with the association’s dissolution plan and intentions.
"We feel compelled to advise you that these funds were primarily comprised of small donations from residents of the town of South Thomaston, and consequently believe that an obligation to insure that they be used for a public purpose is certainly heightened."
Courier Publications News Director Daniel Dunkle can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 594-4401 ext. 122.
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Daniel Dunkle is editor of The Courier-Gazette and news director for Courier Publications. He lives in Rockland with his wife, Christine, who also works for Courier Publications, and two children.
Dunkle has previously served as editor of The Republican Journal in Belfast. He has worked as a reporter and photographer in the Midcoast since 1998.