Attorney General Files Agreement to Revoke Pension of Former Waterbury Library Clerk
Under an agreement filed in Hartford Superior Court this week, a former library clerk for the city of Waterbury who pleaded guilty to a felony larceny charge for embezzling more than $200,000 from a city library will have her pension revoked, Attorney General George Jepsen said today.
Lynette James, who was employed by the city from 1989 to 2014, has signed a stipulation for judgment agreeing to the revocation of her pension. The court has approved the stipulation, and her pension benefits have been revoked.
James' projected pension benefit is approximately $13,000 annually. In addition to the pension revocation, James has agreed to a court order that pension contributions she paid into the pension fund, without interest, will be applied to any restitution order in her criminal matter. James' employee contributions totaled approximately $43,000.
"Theft from a municipality or the state is a serious violation of the public trust," said Attorney General Jepsen. "In 2008, the General Assembly granted my office authority to seek a pension revocation or reduction from a state or municipal official convicted of a felony in connection with their public position. This settlement revokes Ms. James' pension in full and guarantees that taxpayers will not be on the hook for the pension of someone guilty of stealing public funds."
James pleaded guilty to one count of larceny in the first degree in April; her criminal case is pending. She is currently scheduled to be sentenced in June. Attorney General Jepsen praised Waterbury State's Attorney Maureen Platt for her effective prosecution in the criminal matter.
Under state statute enacted in 2008, the Attorney General is authorized to initiate a civil action seeking reduction or revocation of the pension of any state or municipal official who, in state or federal court, is convicted of or pleads guilty to a crime related to their state or municipal office on or after October 1, 2008.
Any state or municipal official convicted on corruption-related charges – defined specifically in the law as embezzling public funds; committing felony theft from the state; bribery in connection with one's service as a state or municipal employee; or committing a felony with intent to defraud in order to obtain a profit, gain or advantage for themselves or someone else – could face court action to reduce or revoke their pension.