Former turnpike employees arrested for “stealing time”, using vehicles for personal use

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HARRISBURG, Pa. – Two former employees of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission accused of “stealing time” from their employer and using state vehicles for their personal use have been arrested.

The criminal charges filed today against Sharie Anne Sacco, 56, and Stephen Michael Dombek, 51, are the result of separate investigations by the Office of Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigations.

Investigators developed information that Dombek and Sacco both had been “stealing time” from the turnpike commission, meaning they allegedly falsified their work hours to be paid for work they never performed.

According to a criminal complaint filed in support of the charges, Sacco worked for the turnpike commission as a construction manager and was responsible for overseeing and inspecting projects on the turnpike commission’s Northeastern Extension. A 32-year employee of the turnpike commission, Sacco worked out of the Quakertown Maintenance Facility in Bucks County.

It is alleged that Sacco received $5,918 which she was not entitled to by falsifying work hours submitted to a time management system that turnpike commission employees use to record their work time.

The turnpike commission’s Office of Special Investigations discovered the alleged theft by conducting surveillance of Sacco on 39 days between April and June 2015. She allegedly falsified her work time on all 39 days she was under surveillance, according to investigators.

Sacco is also accused of submitting for meal payments to which she was not entitled and using a turnpike commission vehicle for her personal use on several occasions while she was under surveillance.

Sacco, 3612 Lenape Lane, Emmaus, Lehigh County, is charged with two counts each of tampering with public records or information and tampering with record or identification, as well as one count each of conflict of interest, theft by deception and theft. She appeared today for a preliminary arraignment. Bail was set at $20,000 unsecured. A preliminary hearing is tentatively scheduled for June 24.

According to a criminal complaint filed in support of the charges, Stephen Dombek also worked as a construction manager for the turnpike commission and was responsible for overseeing and inspecting construction projects on the turnpike commission’s Northeastern Extension. An eight-year employee of the turnpike commission, Dombek worked out of two locations, one in Luzerne County and the other in Lehigh County.

It is alleged that Dombek received $2,196 which he was not entitled to by falsifying work hours submitted to the turnpike commission’s time management system.

The turnpike commission’s Office of Special Investigations discovered the alleged theft by conducting surveillance of Dombek on 17 days in February and March of 2015. During that period, investigators with the Office of Special Investigations said they determined that Dombek falsely recorded the times he reported to work. He also reported working much later than he actually did, investigators stated.

Dombek is also accused of submitting for meal payments to which he was not entitled and using a turnpike commission vehicle for his personal use on several occasions while he was under surveillance.

Dombek, 297 Lakeside Drive, Hunlock Creek, Luzerne County, is charged with two counts each of tampering with public records or information and tampering with record or identification, as well as one count each of conflict of interest, theft by deception and theft. He appeared today for a preliminary arraignment. Bail was set at $20,000 unsecured. A preliminary hearing is tentatively scheduled for June 23.

The Office of Attorney General commenced its investigations after receiving a referral from the Office of Chief Counsel, Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission.