COOPERSTOWN -- A former Edmeston town clerk was being held at Otsego County Correctional Facility on Wednesday night after being charged with stealing nearly $3,000 in town funds while she was still on the job.
Janet Lynn Fallon, 40, was extradited from Virginia to New York last week after an Edmeston judge signed an arrest warrant charging her with fourth-degree grand larceny, officials said.
Otsego County Sheriff's Department investigators opened an investigation into Fallon a year ago after getting a complaint from the Edmeston town attorney involving a critical audit of the clerk's office that had been completed by the state Comptroller's office, officials said.
The investigation found that Fallon improperly diverted $2,744 in town funds to herself between January 2008 and December 2009, the sheriff's department said.
Edmeston Town Supervisor Russell Dutcher recalled Fallon as "a nice girl who just struggled with the position that she had."
"There is a lot of help out there from other towns, but she didn't go out of her way to get assistance," he said. "She was kind of slack in her accounting."
He noted that Fallon is a single mother with approximately five children, and was apparently struggling to make ends meet.
"It's one of those things you never want to see happen," he said.
Edmeston Highway Supervisor Dale Lund expressed surprise at the arrest.
"I always got along with her," he said.
Edmeston Town Justice Amanda Conklin set Fallon's bail at $10,000.
Fourth-degree grand larceny carries a maximum penalty of four years in state prison.
Otsego County District Attorney John Muehl said he was just getting the case file and had no immediate information on how the alleged embezzlement was carried out.
Fallon is scheduled to return to Edmeston Town Court on Monday.