A 57-year-old Passaic woman pleaded guilty Tuesday to stealing more than $23,000 from a fund she had authority over for an association of clerks and other non-law-enforcement employees of the Passaic County Sheriff’s Department.
Valerie Jacalone faces probation and 364 days in the Passaic County Jail when sentenced April 15 before state Superior Court Judge Raymond A. Reddin in Paterson. She pleaded guilty Tuesday before Reddin to one count of theft by deception. As part of that plea, she must forfeit her position effective Tuesday and make restitution of the $23,581 she stole from the Passaic County Sheriff’s Department Clerical Association while she served as its president from 2008 to 2010.
Attorney Miles Feinstein of Clifton, representing Jacalone, said in court she has already paid back $9,000, though Redin said he will expect documentation proving that at sentencing time.
As president, Jacalone had access to an account funded by all members via an automatic payroll deduction of $5 per paycheck. The account was used for general member benefits, according to prosecutors, who said in court that Jacalone bought personal items from the QVC cable home shopping network and elsewhere.
Feinstein maintained that his client always intended to make amends. “She never intended to keep the money forever. She intended to reimburse but didn’t do that by the time she was arrested,” he said in court. After the proceedings, he added, “She did a lot of wonderful work for the association. This is a tragedy she wants to put behind her.”
The defendant was an 18-year civil clerk veteran of the Passaic County Sheriff’s Department.
Filed Under: PASSAIC COUNTY
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