A man from Northumberland County could spend close to two years behind bars after pleading guilty to stealing almost $25,000 from an American Legion post.
Wayne Brown didn't have much to say as he left the Northumberland County courthouse in Sunbury. The man from Milton pleaded guilty Monday to stealing almost $25,000 from the organization he managed, the Milton American Legion Post 71.
"He traced all the money he didn't deposit. That's how we knew he took it," said Richard Powell of the American Legion.
Legion members noticed the money was missing late last year. Brown admitted stealing the money between January and October of 2011.
Powell and other members of the legion were at Brown's sentencing in Sunbury.
"I think we should be here to let him know we don't approve of what he did," Powell said.
Brown told police he didn't know why he started taking the money. He said he used it to fix his vehicle, buy food and help out his kids. Legion members said Brown had a drinking and gambling problem and that's what he used the money for.
"A lot of people trusted him. He made a lot of friends up there. He doesn't have to worry about them now," added Powell.
Wayne Brown was sentenced to four and a half to 23 months behind bars. He also has to pay back all of the money he stole.
"He did a very bad thing so what he gets is his. He earned it," Powell said.
He added the legion is trying to catch up on bills that weren't paid when Brown was in charge of the money.
"And if it helps it we could get rid of them and get things straightened out so we can stop talking about it and get back to coming to the post and enjoying themselves," said Powell.
Legion members said the missing money could just be the tip of the iceberg. Brown held the position for about four years, meaning there could be more money missing.