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Charges against former Waynesboro fire chief dismissed

June 09, 2004|by RICHARD BELISLE

waynesboro@herald-mail.com

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Misdemeanor theft charges against former Waynesboro Fire Chief Dale Glenn Fishack Jr. were dismissed this week after Fishack agreed to pay restitution and court costs, District Justice Larry G. Pentz said Tuesday.

Fishack had been scheduled to appear in court Tuesday on the charges, Pentz said.

Fishack said Tuesday he was pleased that the charges were dropped.

"There never was an intent to keep anything from the fire department. That was the basis of what the investigation found," he said.

He said he is working as a maintenance and safety director for a facility in Washington County that cares for developmentally disabled individuals.

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The deal was worked out between Assistant District Attorney T.R. Williams, state police investigators and attorney David Keller, Fishack's lawyer, Pentz said.

The misdemeanor charges against Fishack were dismissed under a Pennsylvania rule of criminal law called Rule 546, Keller said Tuesday. The rule can be applied if no harm was done to the public and restitution is made.

Keller said two checks totaling about $600 were paid to Fishack for work he did on behalf of the fire company. He kept the money for use by the fire department rather than turning it over to the borough, Keller said.

According to court records at the time of his arrest, Fishack was accused of depositing fire department funds into his own account on two occasions. Fishack later turned the money over to state police investigators, Keller said.

Fishack also returned $60 from the sale of some pager and radio batteries that he sold to fire department members, Keller said.

He paid court costs of $112, Pentz said.

Council member A.J. Benchoff said earlier this week that the district attorney and the council agreed that the outcome of the case was appropriate.

Charles "Chip" McCammon, borough council president, said he was glad the case is over.

Fishack was Waynesboro's paid fire chief from 1997 to December when he announced his resignation. The Waynesboro Borough Council put Fishack on administrative leave in November.

He was earning about $36,000 a year at the time of his resignation.

The council appointed Ron Flegel acting fire chief in March. The chief's position is now considered part time, and only full-time paid drivers can apply for the job.

Flegel, who is paid $200 a month as acting chief, has said he would apply for the post.

McCammon said interviews have not been scheduled.

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