A former Aurora police officer was given a suspended prison sentence with 18 months in jail on work release for stealing from two charities for which he served as treasurer.
Arapahoe County District Court Judge Ben Leutwyler today sentenced Roland Albert for stealing a combined $65,000 over a period of 15 months from the two charities that offer assistance families of law enforcement families.
“It is difficult to find words of condemnation commensurate with a person — a sworn police officer —who steals from charities to enrich himself,” said District Attorney George Brauchler. “He has forfeited the honorable title ‘police officer’ and he has earned the title ‘convicted felon.’ No person, law enforcement or otherwise, is above our laws.”
Brauchler added: “I commend the Aurora Police Department for investigating their own and appropriately seeking prosecution for these despicable acts.”
Aurora Police internal affairs officers were investigating Albert for another reason when they discovered an issue with one charity. They contacted the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office in August 2018 to take over the criminal investigation.
Sheriff’s investigators found money missing from that charity beginning in December 2017. Knowing Albert was also treasurer of another charity, they looked there, as well. More money was found to be missing since May 2017 and a warrant was obtained for Albert’s arrest on Feb. 28, 2019.
The investigation determined Albert stole $57,613 from the first charity and $7,753 from the second charity.
On Oct. 7, 2019, Albert pleaded guilty to one count of theft of $20,000 to $100,000, which is a Class 4 felony. Other counts were dismissed as part of the plea agreement.
Representatives from each organization spoke at the sentencing, outlining the damage the defendant had done to their work, their members, their reputations and to law enforcement officers in general.
On Dec. 16, Judge Leutwyler imposed a 4-year suspended sentence to the Department of Corrections, dependent on successful completion of 5 years of economic crimes probation. Probation will include 18 months in jail on work release and payment of restitution.
“This officer deliberately took action 47 times to steal from charities that had entrusted him with their finances. These were organizations created to assist his fellow officers, and to which many of his colleagues donated,” said Senior Deputy District Attorney Steve Fauver,who prosecuted the case. “This man was stealing from his friends and coworkers and literally stealing from orphans – all while he was an officer sworn to uphold the law.”