Maintenance worker pleads guilty to theft

Staff report


Rex Thomas, a Trumbull County maintenance worker, pleaded guilty to theft in office, a felony, for stealing $160 in candy money from the Trumbull County Juvenile/Family Court.

As a maintenance worker, Thomas, 52, of Maryland Street, had access to money that was being raised to benefit an animal charity at the Main Avenue Southwest facility.

Thomas, who has worked in maintenance for seven years, was placed on unpaid administrative leave about two weeks ago, according to the county’s Human Resources office.

The felony theft-in-office charge was appropriate because Thomas used his position as a county employee to commit the theft, said Gabe Wildman, an assistant county prosecutor.

Thomas entered his guilty plea Monday to a bill of information before Judge Peter Kontos of common pleas court.

Pleading to a bill of information bypasses indictment by a grand jury.

Thomas will be sentenced in about five weeks, after the county Adult Probation Department conducts an investigation.

He could receive up to a year in prison.

The prosecutor’s office will recommend Thomas serve jail or prison time and pay restitution, Wildman said.