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Former Erie County deputy clerk charged with embezzlement

In a significant breach of public trust, former Deputy Erie County Clerk Alexander McDougall was arrested for allegedly embezzling over $200,000 from county funds. This announcement was made by State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, alongside Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn and Erie County Sheriff John C. Garcia. The arrest followed a comprehensive investigation revealing McDougall’s misuse of his position to divert county money for personal gain.

The internal scrutiny led by the Erie County Comptroller’s Office prompted a forensic audit, revealing a pattern of financial discrepancies spanning from January 1, 2021, through June 30, 2023. McDougall’s responsibilities included overseeing the deposit slips and reconciling them with daily collection reports, during which investigators identified routine misappropriations of collected cash that were not deposited into the county’s account.

McDougall’s arrest marks a crucial step towards accountability and the restoration of public trust in Erie County’s governance. Charged with grand larceny in the second degree, McDougall’s legal proceedings are set to continue, with further investigations aiming to uncover the full extent of the financial misconduct dating back to the start of his tenure in 2019.