Former Captain Receives Conditional Discharge for Stealing from Fire Department

Modified: January 8, 2020 3:42pm

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1/8/2020

Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that 36-year-old Brent Dewitt of East Amherst has been sentenced by State Supreme Court Justice John L. Michalski to a 3 year conditional discharge.

The defendant admitted that he stole $23,725.48 while working as a captain for the Swormville Fire Department. Between November 1, 2018 and April 30, 2019, Dewitt made numerous unauthorized transactions with the fire department’s credit card and sent the money to his personal PayPal accounts. He attempted to cover up his criminal actions by submitting falsified receipts for those transactions.

PayPal reimbursed the Swormville Fire Department and froze assets in Dewitt’s accounts to cover their loss. Dewitt was placed on administrative leave when the theft was initially discovered and he has since been removed from his position.

Dewitt pleaded guilty to one count of Grand Larceny in the Fourth Degree and one count of Falsifying Business Records in the First Degree, both Class “E” felonies, on October 30, 2019. 

As part of his sentence, Dewitt must perform 100 hours of community service. He is also prohibited from handling money on behalf of any organization for the next 3 years.

DA Flynn commends New York State Police Investigator John Clarke for his work in this investigation.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Gary M. Ertel of the DA’s Public Integrity Unit.