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Former police officer, school district employee, pleads guilty to grand larceny

By PAT BAILEY

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - Thomas Hubal, a retired Rome Police Officer and former employee of the Rome School District, pleaded guilty Monday to grand larceny.

Hubal received more than $88,000 of pension money he was not authorized to get.

Hubal's case supposed was to go to trail Monday, but instead, he accepted a plea offer at the last minute.

After retiring from the Rome Police Department, Hubal went to work for the Rome School District. Initially hired as an employee, Hubal applied to the state to receive both a check and his pension.

The state comptroller's office denied his request.

Hubal then tried the process, this time as an independent contractor. Again, the state denied his request.

Hubal went on collecting the pension and the check while working for the school district.

His attorney, Les Lewis, said the state simply wanted more information about Hubal's case, but the school district wouldn't supply it, and they are as much to blame as his client.

"There certainly should be some responsibility put upon the shoulders of those who employed Mr. Hubal," said Lewis. "From the Rome School District business office, and/or whoever else was involved in the process."

The Rome School District has not yet returned calls to NEWSChannel 2 about the story.

As part of the plea offer, Hubal will receive five years probation, with the first six months served in jail. He will also be forced to pay $88,362 in restitution when he is sentenced March 31.

Hubal still collects his pension from his time as a Rome Police Officer, and the restitution will come out of his weekly check.

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