Local/State

Fmr. Bethel officer turns himself in

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Former Bethel and Aston police officer John Rapp turned himself into Delaware County investigators today.

A short time later he was arraigned on theft charges, accused of stealing nearly $13,000 dollars from the Chichester Baseball League.

Rapp was treasurer of the league.

His attorney appears to be using accounting errors as a defense.

"Inadvertence, incompetence, and even amateurish attempts at accounting are not the same things as intentional wrongdoing," Rapp's attorney Russ Carmichael said.

But according to court records, Rapp allegedly used the league credit card and bank account as his own personal kitty.

He is accused of withdrawing $700 cash at Harrah's Casino and charging other personal items at Wawa, the Renaissance Fair, and other establishments.

He also allegedly began paying umpires in cash and while doing so, pocketed thousands of dollars for himself.

Court records reveal Rapp admitted to the league board about the personal expenditures and paid back roughly $5,000 last spring.

But by then the county had begun its investigation.

"If you are in charge in money and it turns out things aren't adding up, I think you are obligated to pay that money back no matter what happens," Carmichael said.

When asked about the withdrawals from Harrah's Casino and the Renaissance Fair, Carmichael replied, "I haven't read the complaint."

Rapp is out on $50,000 unsecured bail. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for March.

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Tags:
pennsylvania, delaware county, theft, local/state, chad pradelli
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