DuBOIS — DuBois Solicitor Toni Cherry has released a statement on behalf of all of city council members regarding charges of theft and fraud being filed against city Manager John “Herm” Suplizio on Monday by the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office.
“On behalf of all of city council, I share our disappointment upon learning (Monday) about the allegations against our long-time city Manager, Herm Suplizio,” Cherry said in the statement. “For over two decades, Herm has served DuBois with a passion and determination that has grown its reputation and profile well beyond that of similar cities. Out of respect for Herm, as well as the judicial process, we will reserve comment on these allegations until a more appropriate time.
“However, council will remain vigilant in our oversight of city funds and its employees,” stated Cherry. “We will continue to monitor the matter and further our own review of the facts moving forward. We are committed to ensuring integrity is maintained within DuBois City government, which, we believe epitomizes Herm’s tenure as city manager. We appreciate all the kind words in support of Herm and the city that we have received from members of the community, and we thank you all for your patience with this deliberative process.”
Suplizio, who is also the executive director of the DuBois Area United Way, is charged with five third-degree felony counts of theft by unlawful taking, a felony count of restricted activities, eight misdemeanor charges of fraudulent returns and a second-degree misdemeanor of misapplication of entrusted property, according to court documents filed at Magisterial District Judge David Meholick’s office in DuBois.
Suplizio waived his preliminary hearing Monday, with unsecured bail set at $100,000. His formal arraignment is scheduled for April 12 in the Clearfield County Annex Courtroom.
According to a press release from the Attorney General’s Office, Suplizio, 62, of DuBois, “allegedly committed $620,815 in fraudulent transactions, using funds from city bank accounts and the DuBois Area United Way account to pay his personal credit card bills, make political donations and gamble. The majority of the funds came from accounts for Community Days, an annual summer event presented by the DuBois Volunteer Fire Department, for which Suplizio and his secretary were the sole signatories.”
“A Grand Jury investigation found that, in addition to the fraud, Suplizio used his position as city manager to enter into contracts with businesses for which he received personal benefits. From 2014-2021, Suplizio also provided false information on his tax returns, paying for numerous charges with public money and claiming those charges as unreimbursed expenses on his taxes,” according to the press release.