Former Elida school employee charged in theft of more than $100,000


By J Swygart - jswygart@limanews.com



ELIDA — The former head of maintenance for Elida Local School District was indicted by an Allen County grand jury on charges of theft in office and aggravated theft for “depriving the … Elida School District of property or services” valued in excess of $100,000 but less than $500,000.

Matthew Burton, 42, of Lima, was indicted earlier this month by a grand jury on the third-degree felony charges. The indictment was filed Oct. 13 and Burton entered a written plea of not guilty with the court on Oct. 20. A pretrial hearing was scheduled for 3:45 p.m. Nov. 20.

According to the indictment, the theft in office charge stems from the allegation that Burton, “while being a public or party official, did commit the theft offense when the property or service involved is owned by the state … or any political subdivision, department or agency … and the value of the property or services stolen was $5,000 or more.”

The indictment alleges the offenses took place between October 2007 through May 2017. Burton resigned his position with the school on May 11. He is being represented by attorney Brad Kelly.

Elida schools Superintendent Joel Mengerink was in a meeting Monday afternoon and was unavailable for comment.

By J Swygart

jswygart@limanews.com