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The Steuben Courier Advocate
  • Troopers: H'port man stole from Legion, made up robbery story

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  • HAMMONDSPORT | A custodian at the Hammondsport American Legion is facing multiple felony charges for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars from the Legion, then concocting a story about a robbery.
    Larry R. Smith, 64, of 8019 Back Valley Rd., Hammondsport, was charged with third-degree burglary and third-degree grand larceny, both Class D felonies; and a first-degree falsifying business records, a Class E felony, according to Bath-based New York State Police.
    According to Sr. Inv. Curt Eaton, Smith called 911 shortly before 8 a.m. Sunday to report a robbery at the American Legion post, located on State Route 54.
    He told state police who responded that while he was working at the Legion - which was closed at the time - two individuals came to the door, saying their vehicle had broken down. Smith said he let them in, and then they pulled ski masks over their faces and claimed to be armed with a weapon.
    Smith told troopers they broke into a secured area in the Legion, stole money, and fled on foot.
    Following several leads in the Hammondsport area, troopers located the missing money, according to Eaton.
    Subsequent interviews with Smith revealed inconsistencies in his story, and he eventually admitted to stealing the money himself and fabricating the story about the robbers, according to Eaton.
    The burglary charge stems from Smith allegedly entering a secured, restricted area of the Legion. The grand larceny charge indicates that Smith allegedly stole $3,000 or more. The falsifying business records charge stems from his false report to the Steuben County 911 Center.
    Smith was arraigned by Justice James Burns in Bath Town Court and sent to the Steuben County Jail on $2,000 bail.

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