Punxsutawney woman accused of stealing from Big Run War Memorial Fund

Local News

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — A Punxsutawney woman faces felony theft charges after state police said she stole funds from the Big Run War Memorial Fund in 2019.

Bonita Haugh, 67, allegedly wrote out checks for cash through the Big Run accounts. Investigators noted this has been occurring since July 2015 until June of 2019 when the investigation started.

Haugh was interviewed in October of 2019 and police said she made inconsistent statements and lied several times. Haugh confessed to stealing the money from the fund in the interview but stated she didn’t believe it could be more than $5,000 or $4,000, according to the charges filed. She was interviewed again in August of 2020 and investigators said she was unable to provide a legitimate purpose for the checks that were written out to “cash.”

A month later, Haugh was interviewed a third time and admitted she used Big Run Way Memorial Funds for personal use and said if she wrote any checks for personal use, it would have been one check for $400. Haugh told police she replaced the amount of money when she got paid and later on said she wrote another check for $500.

Investigators said based on checks analyzed from March of 2016 and February of 2017 and Haugh’s admission, a total of $5,000 was deemed to be cashed with no explanation, Haugh has a preliminary hearing scheduled for May 25.

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