Dayton Police Chief Derek Woods said his department will seek an arrest warrant for the former treasurer of the Dayton Youth Sports Association after an investigation has determined that tens of thousands of dollars were allegedly pilfered.
“I won’t even say the funds have been misappropriated because it appears to be a theft. She was sending money to herself through the DYSA accounts,” Woods said. “We do have a suspect, but she has retained an attorney, so we have not yet collected a statement from her at this point.”
Woods said investigators are hoping to get an arrest warrant signed by Tuesday or Wednesday of next week.
“It’s not a ‘who done it’ case. The stuff that they have won’t be a tough case to prove,” Woods said.
The theft case was presented to Dayton PD late this week by DYSA President Haden Gutierrez after a four-member committee, made up of other DYSA board members, researched the organization’s financial records and found irregularities.
“The amount of evidence that we have is pretty overwhelming,” Gutierrez said.
Suspicions of theft began when “the numbers didn’t add up,” the DYSA president said.
“We have about 576 kids who participate in Dayton Youth Sports Association. With registration fees and the money that moves through the ballpark on opening day, we knew we should have more money in our accounts,” he said. “We started taking a closer look at it and then confronted her about it.”
According to Gutierrez, among the evidence is $5,000 in payments in a single month that were moved into personal accounts held by the former treasurer.
“There were times when she was moving money over when she had zero reasons to move it,” he said.
Gutierrez says the situation has left him sad and disappointed.
“There is a certain level of trust that we put in our volunteers. We all are full-time employees at our regular jobs and do this on a volunteer basis. I personally spend about 20 hours a week on DYSA activities. We all take time from our personal lives to do what we do because this organization and the kids mean so much to us, so we feel blindsided by this at the moment,” he said. “We have so many kids with hardships, children being raised by their grandparents, and there have been times when we have taken money out of our own pockets to pay for things the kids need. Had the money not been stolen, we might have been able to do more for these kids.”
Gutierrez said he and the remaining DYSA board members have a lot of work to do to rebuild the trust of the community and sponsors.
“We know we have a huge mountain to climb to earn back the trust,” he said.