Huntington, WV man steals nearly half-million dollars from his church.
Robert Dale Adkins, 76, of Ona, previously pled guilty to a mail fraud scheme. Adkins was sentenced to 33 months in prison and ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $487,488.92.
“Stealing is one thing, but stealing almost half a million dollars from a church is both remarkable and tragic,” said the United States Attorney Mike Stuart. “This man betrayed the trust of the church and its parishioners for six years by padding his personal bank account with the church’s money.”
From at least 2012 until approximately December 2018, Adkins was the treasurer for the Antioch Baptist Church, located near Ona. As treasurer, Adkins had access to the church’s checking account and was authorized to sign checks from that account on behalf of the church. While serving as treasurer, Adkins wrote and signed checks on the church’s account for his own benefit.
Those checks went to pay personal creditors as well as for personal items. Adkins wrote the checks without the church membership’s knowledge or approval, and without the knowledge or approval of any church board member. Adkins would then mail the checks to pay his personal creditors. Adkins wrote approximately $487,488.92 in unauthorized checks on the church’s account for his personal use.
The West Virginia State Police and the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) conducted the investigation. United States District Judge Robert C. Chambers imposed the sentence. Assistant United States Attorney Greg McVey handled the prosecution.
To put a face on the victims of this crime. Here is a short video from the folks at Antioch Baptist Church. These seem to be very nice and happy people. It is a shame that such a crime was committed against them by the very person who was to be the steward of the parishioners’ tithes.