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Former clerk admits guilt

PORT HENRY Former Port Henry Clerk Barbara A. Tesar could be sentenced to 15 years in prison March 25. Tesar, 45, of Whitney Street, Port Henry, pleaded guilty in Essex County Court to felony charges of second-degree grand larceny and first-degree tampering with public records Feb. 26. The former village clerk admitted she stole almost $153,000 from village cash receipts over a five-year period. An audit by the State Comptrollers Office Division of Local Government lists $152,865 as the amount taken by Tesar in her capacity as village clerk-treasurer from 2002 to 2007. Tesar admitted she stuffed the money into her pocketbook while working in the village hall. She said that when people paid for property taxes, village campground seasonal rentals, water and sewer charges and garbage stickers she kept the cash and altered village books to conceal the thefts. Tesar was arrested nearly a year ago after village officials became suspicious over a missing cash payment and contacted state police. District Attorney Julie Garcia said that if Tesar makes full restitution by the time of sentencing, she will forgo a forfeiture proceeding that could seize the new house that Tesar and her family constructed in Port Henry.

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