Monmouth County softball coach pocketed money meant for team, prosecutor says
A Monmouth County softball coach has been called out on strikes as he is being charged for taking money from parents meant for the team's traveling expenses and tournament costs and putting it into his own bank account.
The Neptune Township man is facing charges of theft after he misused about $14,000 of the softball team’s funds earmarked for traveling expenses and tournament costs, announced Monmouth County Prosecutor Chris Gramiccioni.
Michael Lane, 54, of Neptune, who has been the coach for the Monmouth Surf Softball team since 2013, was investigated by Tinton Falls Police last year when parents reported the crime in July of 2019.
Parents for the players were informed by Lane he misused the funds given to him for personal use and the money was no longer available.
Lane told the parents he would pay them back but the player's would be off the team.
An investigation by Tinton Falls Police with assistance from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, revealed Lane did not utilize the funds for the softball team and instead deposited approximately $14,000 of the stolen money into his personal account.
He is charged with third degree Theft by Unlawful Taking and third degree Misapplication of Entrusted Property by detectives from the Tinton Falls Police Department with assistance from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office.
If convicted of the third degree crimes, Lane faces up to five years in a New Jersey state prison on each count.
The case is assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Diane Aifer.
Lane is represented by Jacqueline E. Cistaro, Esq. of New York.
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