A former Orange Township zoning inspector was sentenced to two years of probation after pleading guilty in Delaware County Common Pleas Court to a charge of theft in office.
Thomas Farahay, 64, of 21 Carriage Drive, Delaware, appeared before Delaware County Common Pleas Judge David Gormley Wednesday morning for a sentencing hearing. Farahay entered a guilty plea to a charge of theft in office, a fifth-degree felony, at his arraignment on Feb. 8.
Farahay told Gormley at his arraignment in February that while he was the zoning inspector for Orange Township, he accepted cash payments for signage permits but kept the cash, instead of turning it over to the township.
Farahay said he did this several times over a period of a few years. Prosecutors said the period was between Feb. 1, 2012, and March 1, 2015.
Gormley ordered Farahay be placed on two years of community control supervision and said he faces a potential 10-month prison sentence if he violates the terms of the sentence.
Gormley said Farahay had paid $320 in restitution for the amount he pocketed while zoning inspector after his arraignment in February and sentenced him to pay an additional fine of $300.
Farahay was also ordered to perform community service.
Farahay was fired as zoning inspector by Orange Township trustees on June 5, 2015, after an investigation was started. At that time, Farahay had worked for the township for about 15 years.
Farahay’s attorney, Keith Boger, said Farahay is now retired.
David Hray, a former employee of the Franklin County Economic Development and Planning Department, was hired as the new zoning and planning director in Orange Township on Sept. 14, 2015.
Farahay was charged directly by the Delaware County Prosecutor’s Office last December after he agreed to a bill of information.
Farahay is a former reporter at The Gazette.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.