Boy Scout Master Faces Felony Charges
A 41-year-old Gillette man, already on probation for theft by deception in South Dakota, now faces four additional felony charges in Wyoming after allegedly misappropriating funds from a local Boy Scout group.
Jason Barnum was arrested Wednesday, Feb. 6, and now faces three counts of theft over $1,000 and one count of obtaining goods under false pretenses.
According to Gillette Police Detective Julianne Witham, the investigation began in April 2018.
“There were some discrepancies with the popcorn orders that were brought to the [Boy Scout] Council’s attention in Casper,” she said.
Witham said that between April and November of 2018, Barnum, who had access to the group’s account as Scout Master, allegedly took approximately $31,000. The funds came from the Boy Scout’s annual popcorn fundraising efforts, as well as funds already in the account when he gained access to them.
The three charges are the result of one charge for each victim, which, in this case are the Boy Scout troop, the Cub Scout pack, and the Boy Scout Council in Casper.
During the course of the investigation, Witham said another crime was uncovered. Barnum had also allegedly conned a 76-year-old female in Gillette out of $122,000.
“So, essentially he had asked for a loan and said that he would pay it back with an inheritance that he was getting that never existed,” said Witham.
She said Barnum had done some contracting work for the Gillette woman in 2017 and 2018.
The Boy Scout Council Executive in Casper was not available for comment by press time.
The maximum penalty for each felony charge is 10 years imprisonment and/or a $10,000 fine.