Cresson foreman accused of theft

A former Cresson Borough employee is facing felony criminal charges for stealing more than 100 tons of road materials and selling it to another municipality, according to police.

State police said Richard Francis Latterner, 58, 1123 Fourth St., Cresson, stole over 100 tons of salt and anti-skid from the borough between January 2012 and April 2013 and gave the materials to a contractor in charge of plowing and salting in Loretto Borough, where Latterner also worked.

Latterner was employed as Cresson Borough’s road foreman and had access to the materials and the machinery needed to load it, police said.

Police said Latterner then wrote false invoices and submitted them to Loretto Borough, receiving eight checks for the stolen materials totalling $4,330.

The alleged theft was uncovered during a state audit of Loretto’s liquid fuels, police said.

According to borough officials, Latterner had worked for Cresson for 28 years.

Latterner was arrested by the state police Organized Crime Task Force and charged with theft by unlawful taking, theft by deception and tampering with records.

All charges against Latterner were held for Common Pleas Court at a July 8 hearing in front of Magisterial District Judge Galen Decort, who released Latterner on $10,000 unsecured bail.

Latterner’s arraignment is scheduled for 8 a.m. Aug. 19 at the Cambria County Courthouse. A judge has not yet been assigned to the case, according to online court documents.

Neither Latterner nor his attorney, Paul J. Eckenrode of Ebensburg, returned calls for comment.

A July 14 Cresson Borough council agenda shows solicitor Calvin J. Webb discussed a June 23 closed-door council session regarding Latterner’s pending criminal charges.

Latterner submitted a letter of resignation June 24, which council accepted at its July meeting before voting to advertise for a new road foreman.

Webb did not return a call for comment. Council President Joseph Pupo did not respond to an email for comment.

A call to Loretto Borough also was not returned. It is unclear whether Latterner is still employed there.