Former Waitress Pleads Guilty to Felony for Stealing Gaming Tickets While Working at Hamburg Restaurant

Modified: June 9, 2022 12:43pm

6/9/2022

Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that 31-year-old Danielle K. Bush of the Town of Tonawanda pleaded this morning before Erie County Court Judge Kenneth Case to one count of Grand Larceny in the Third Degree (Class “D” felony). The defendant pleaded guilty to the only charge in the indictment against her.

The defendant admitted to stealing gaming tickets and placing fraudulent bets while employed as a server at a restaurant on Lake Shore Road in the Town of Hamburg between June 2, 2019 and February 8, 2020. Over the course of eight months, the defendant committed the crime while processing bets placed by customers for a number of games of chance, including Quick Draw, Mega Millions and Power Ball. The defendant’s actions resulted in an estimated total loss of approximately $50,000.00 to the restaurant.

The theft was discovered after the owner of the restaurant conducted an internal audit of monthly billing statements from the New York State Gaming Commission in February 2020. The statements revealed abnormally high gaming activity, unusual betting amounts and unique betting patterns, which corresponded with the defendant’s work schedule. The crime was also corroborated by video evidence. The defendant was subsequently fired from her job.

As part of her guilty plea, the defendant signed Confessions of Judgment to pay the full amount of restitution by her date of sentence. To date, the defendant has paid $10,000 in restitution to the owner of the restaurant.

Bush faces a maximum of 7 years in prison when she is sentenced as a second felony offender on Wednesday, October 12, 2022 at 9:30 a.m. She remains released on her own recognizance as the charge is a non-qualifying offense for bail.

DA Flynn commends Det. Howard Widman, Det. Scott Fraser and retired Sgt. Scott Kashino of the Town of Hamburg Police Department for their work in this investigation.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Christopher P. Jurusik from the Special Investigations and Prosecutions (SIP) Bureau.