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Fire Chief and spouse arrested for alleged embezzlement in Sweetwater Co.

Michael and Stephanie Nomis (courtesy of the Sweewater County Sheriffs Office)

CASPER, Wyo. — A fire chief and his spouse have arrested on warrants for alleged embezzlement of donated funds, according to the Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office

“A months-long investigation into the suspected embezzlement of donated funds from the City of Green River, Wyo. Fire Department Foundation culminated today with the arrests of Green River Fire Department Chief,” officials with Sweetwater County said Monday.

Michael Nomis, 50, and Stephanie Nomis, 46, have been identified as being arrested in the incident. Sweetwater County officials identified the pair as being married.

“In November of last year, our detectives served search warrants to obtain bank records associated with the GRFD Foundation. In January of this year, our detectives served additional search warrants at Green River City Hall and GRFD for corresponding and related financial records,” Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office said in a written statement. “The GRFD Foundation was established to supplement the budget provided to the fire department from the city. The Foundation Fund actually includes three separate bank accounts that are designated for different purposes (i.e., equipment, victim services, etc.), but each of these accounts holds money that is donated by local community organizations and businesses until it is needed by the fire department. The GRFD Foundation also has a social fund that is subsidized directly from the paychecks of the department’s volunteer firefighters. Any expenditure from any of these four accounts is strictly regulated by both Foundation and City bylaws.”

Investigators say that court documents show a total of at least $125,000 from the three foundation accounts and the social fund that is either missing or that is still unaccounted for.

On Friday, Sweetwater County Circuit Court Judge Craig Jones issued bench warrants for Michael and Stephanie Nomis’ arrests.

Monday morning, detectives and special agents from the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation served the bench warrants, and arrested Michael and Stephanie Nomis, separately and without incident.

Michael Nomis is charged with felony theft and wrongful appropriation of public property. Stephanie Nomis is charged with felony theft. In Wyoming, theft of $1,000 or more is a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 10 years, a fine of not more than $10,000 or both; wrongful appropriate of public property is a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than one year, a fine of not more than $1,000 or both.

At the time of the release, both remained in custody without bond at Sweetwater County Detention Center.

All of those cited or arrested are presumed innocent until convicted in a court of law. Charges are subject to change following official filings from the Sweetwater County District Attorney’s Office.

This article originally appeared on Oil City News. Used with permission.