Embezzlement Case Dropped

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EmbezzlementST. JOHNSBURY - After entering a plea of not guilty to one felony count of embezzlement last December, a former Lyndon State College baseball coach is now off the hook.

Edward Poland, 48, of Essex Junction, was being accused by the State of Vermont for taking funds totaling nearly $10,000, and allegedly using them for personal reasons in early 2013. The funds were supposed to be used for the team. 

Vermont State Police Sgt. Fred Cornell said in an affidavit that Poland received personal checks from teammates. Police said these checks were supposed to be used for team expenses, but instead they were cashed and never deposited into the team's account. 

Court documents say that while on this trip with the team to Florida, Poland spent thousands of dollars on the team's behalf that were unapproved by the school, such as a team dinner and attending a Major League Baseball training game. 

Poland appeared in Caledonia Superior Court Monday, where his case was dismissed, due to a lack of sufficient evidence. The Judge ruled that none of the provided evidence proves that Poland used any of the money for personal gain.

Due to the judge's ruling, it is no longer a criminal case, and would have to be tried as a civil case, if it were to move forward.