Cemetery owner accused of posting bond with cemetery funds again


By Glenn Battishill - gbattishill@aimmedianetwork.com



A hearing has been set for the owner of Fairview Memorial Park after prosecutors say he used money from the cemetery’s account to post bond — for the second time.

Theodore Lloyd Martin, 53, of Ravenna, Ohio, has been scheduled to appear in Delaware County Common Pleas Court on May 16 for a show cause hearing after Assistant Delaware County Prosecutor Mark Sleeper filed a motion Wednesday morning stating that Martin once again used money from the cemetery’s bank account to post bond.

Theodore and his wife, Arminda, are the owners and operators of Fairview Memorial Park and two other cemeteries, and are accused of taking money for items and services at the cemeteries but never delivering the items or services.

Theodore was arraigned on March 15 and had his bond set at $30,000. Court documents indicate that Theodore was released on March 16 after posting bond. However, Theodore’s bond was revoked after Sleeper reported that Theodore had used money from the cemetery’s bank account to post bond.

At a bond hearing on April 12, Delaware County Common Pleas Judge Everett Krueger increased Theodore’s bond to $100,000. Court records indicate that Theodore then posted bond on April 17.

In the motion for a show cause hearing, Sleeper states that Theodore used money from various accounts to once again post bond via a bail bondsman.

“It appears that the defendant again posted bond using money from various cemetery bank accounts,” Sleeper said. “The defendant continues to believe that the money he receives from the sales of cemetery items is his own money to do with what he wishes.”

A report from Delaware County Sheriff’s Office Detective Christina Burke was attached to Sleeper’s motion. It states that Theodore contacted his mother-in-law and his office manager and coordinated with the two women to withdraw money from various bank accounts belonging to the three cemeteries owned by the Martins and then use that money to post his bond.

In his motion, Sleeper asks for a hearing that would require Theodore to explain why he should not be held in contempt or have his bond revoked.

On Wednesday, Krueger scheduled the hearing for May 16 at noon. Theodore’s trial is currently scheduled for May 30. He is currently free on bond.

Theodore is charged with one count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, a second-degree felony and 51 counts of theft, 27 fourth-degree felonies, 21 fifth-degree felonies and three first-degree misdemeanors.

Arminda was also indicted with Theodore on Feb. 24 and was charged with one count of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, a second-degree felony; and 37 counts of theft, 17 fourth-degree felonies, 17 fifth-degree felonies, and three first-degree misdemeanors.

Krueger said that Theodore faces between two to eight years in prison for the second-degree felony; between six to 18 months in prison for the fourth-degree felonies and between six and 12 months in prison for the fifth-degree felonies.

Arminda is currently incarcerated in West Virginia as part of a sentence from a federal tax evasion case. An arraignment for Arminda has not yet been set in Delaware County Common Pleas Court.

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By Glenn Battishill

gbattishill@aimmedianetwork.com

Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.

Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.