U.S. Department of Justice
Peter F. Neronha
United States Attorney
District of Rhode Island
October 24, 2010
COMPUTER THEFT FROM VA MEDICAL CENTER
LANDS R.I. MAN IN PRISON FOR 12 MONTHS
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Bryan Polke, 56, of North Providence, R.I., was sentenced Friday in U.S. District Court in Providence to twelve months in federal prison and three years supervised release for stealing computer equipment from the VA Medical Center in Providence. Polke, who was both a patient and employee of the Medical Center at the time of the theft, pleaded guilty in June to one count of theft of government property.
The sentence, which was imposed by U.S. District Court Judge William E. Smith, was announced by U.S. Attorney Peter F. Neronha.
At the time of Polke’s guilty plea, Assistant U.S. Attorney Zechariah Chafee told the Court that in February 2010, two Dell computers and computer accessories were reported stolen from the primary care waiting area of the Medical Center. Surveillance video showed a man, later identified as Bryan Polke, and another man, leaving the area hiding large items under their clothing.
Polke, who was later detained, admitted to Veterans Administration police officers that he and another man came to the hospital intending to steal items which could be sold for drug money. The two men made at least two trips to Polke’s car to deposit the stolen items. The identity of the second man remains unclear. The matter continues to be investigated by the Providence Veterans Administration Police and the Office of Inspector General.