GLENS FALLS -- A Saratoga Springs man well known for his local philanthropic efforts was arrested Tuesday on a charge accusing him of stealing more than $26,000 from the hospice organization where he worked, police said.
Robert H. Spratt Jr., 44, was charged with third-degree grand larceny, a felony, in connection with the theft from the House of Grace of the Adirondacks, a nonprofit that runs a hospice home on Henry Street in Glens Falls.
Spratt is accused of stealing $26,170 from the organization between October 2011 and June 2, said Glens Falls Police Detective Sgt. Peter Casertino.
Spratt is well known in the Glens Falls area for his involvement in a variety of local charitable organizations, events and fundraisers. He acted as the co-chairman of the annual Relay for Life event for the American Cancer Society for years in the 1990s and early 2000s.
He was president of the Glens Falls Rotary Club in 2010, helping to organize its fund-raising Water Walk, assisted the local Caritas chapter with fund-raising, hosted an annual charity golf tournament and helped the Adirondack Chamber of Commerce promote local high school basketball tournaments.
Police said there were no indications any of the other organizations were victimized.
Patricia Joyce, president of the Rotary Club, said she knew of no indications money was missing from the Rotary Club during Spratt’s tenure as president.
She said, “You could have knocked me over with a feather” when she learned of the theft allegations.
“I know he has been having some health issues,” she said. “This is just a human tragedy.”
Spratt was director of community outreach for House of Grace, a full-time paid position.
Casertino said Glens Falls Police were contacted recently by members of the board of directors of House of Grace, who had concerns that money was missing from the organization. The investigation found that Spratt allegedly had checks written to himself for reimbursement of fictitious expenses, Casertino said.
“He said he did it to pay bills, but he doesn’t remember a lot of it,” Casertino said.
Spratt was arraigned before Glens Falls Judge Richard Tarantino and posted bail bond.
Calls to House of Grace’s director, Elaine Gibb, and treasurer, Paul Dowen, were not returned Tuesday afternoon.
Spratt’s legal problems don’t end with the House of Grace allegations.
Spratt also faces felony charges in Moreau and Queensbury for allegedly setting up online bank accounts in the name of a female acquaintance and using them to steal money, officials said.
He faces eight felony counts of first-degree falsifying business records in the town of Moreau and one felony count of first-degree falsifying business records and misdemeanor petit larceny charge in Queensbury, according to police. Those charges were filed last month.