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The Journal Gazette

Friday, June 08, 2018 2:36 pm

Retired firefighter admits theft, gets probation

Jim Chapman | The Journal Gazette

A recently retired Fort Wayne firefighter was placed on probation Friday after admitting he stole tens of thousands of dollars from a charitable organization that helps police officers and firefighters.

Daniel A. Newport, 54, was charged Wednesday in Allen Superior Court with theft. He pleaded guilty Friday to theft of property with a value of $750 to $50,000. Court records allege he took more than $57,000 from Guns N Hoses, a charity established to help officers and firefighters in need.

Indiana State Police Detective Clint Hetrick wrote in court documents that Newport was treasurer of Guns N Hoses. Most of Guns N Hoses' money comes from its annual golf outing, and donations ranging from several hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars are made in the form of checks or cash, court records said.

From 2000 to 2013, court records said, Newport made several unauthorized cash withdrawals totaling $24,920 from Guns N Hoses' bank account.

In 2013, Newport was asked to stay on as treasurer, but a new account was established to which only two people not including Newport had access. Newport, however, made several more unauthorized cash withdrawals totaling $32,600, court records said.

Newport told Guns N Hoses officials the money he withdrew was going to police officers and firefighters, but several of those people said they never received donations from Guns N Hoses or Newport, court records said.

Adam O'Connor, Fort Wayne Fire Department spokesman, said Newport retired about two weeks ago after about 26 years on the fire department.

Allen Superior Magistrate Samuel Keirns handed Newport a 1-year suspended sentence and placed him on probation for a year.

jchapman@jg.net