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Press Release

Dunbar Man Ordered to Pay Over $70,000 for Defrauding Local Non-profit

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of West Virginia

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A Dunbar man was sentenced to two years of federal probation and ordered to pay over $70,000 in restitution for defrauding a community caretaking non-profit  that serves the West Dunbar, Institute, and Pinewood areas. The non-profit provides those communities with important services such as neighborhood clean-ups, pothole filling and road paving, senior citizen events, landscaping and grass cutting in common areas, the installation and maintenance of approximately 200 streetlights to deter crime and promote safety.

According to court documents, Walter Greenhowe, 73, was President of the non-profit from 2014 through 2018. While serving as President, Greenhowe engaged in a scheme to defraud the non-profit of approximately $130,349.07 by using the organization’s debit card to obtain cash for his personal use at roadside gaming parlors in and around Dunbar, Nitro, St. Albans, Cross Lanes, and South Charleston. These cash withdrawals often occurred late at night or in the early morning hours. Greenhowe admitted these transactions were unauthorized and unapproved by the non-profit.

Greenhowe also admitted that in 2017, during the course of his debit card fraud, he obtained a $25,000 donation check from a chemical company in Institute. Greenhowe did not turn this check over to the non-profit and instead opened a bank account under the non-profit’s name at a different bank than the one regularly used by the non-profit. Greenhowe deposited the donated check into the account and then withdrew the funds in cash over the course of three months.  

Representatives of the non-profit and community members were present at the sentencing hearing today and addressed the Court directly. They expressed their need for restitution so that their organization could be restored to financial solvency as soon as possible to continue serving the citizens of the West Dunbar, Institute, and Pinewood communities.

The Court acknowledged the non-profit’s desire to restore itself to financial solvency and ordered Greenhowe to pay restitution of $70,349.07. Greenhowe previously repaid approximately $85,000 to the non-profit prior to the discovery of his fraud.  

United States Attorney Will Thompson made the announcement and commended the investigative work of the West Virginia State Police, West Virginia Commission on Special Investigations, and the Litigation Financial Analyst with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

United States District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin imposed the sentence. Assistant United States Attorney Kristin F. Scott prosecuted the case. Assistant United States Attorney Jessica Nathan of the U.S. Attorney Office’s Financial Litigation Unit is coordinating restitution.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia. Related court documents and information can be found on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:21-cr-00133.





Updated March 3, 2022