Former church treasurer charged with theft

| June 12, 2013

A former Door County church treasurer will face five felony charges in Door County Circuit Court for allegedly stealing more than $40,000 from a Sister Bay church over the past five years.

Martin R. Lash, 65, Sturgeon Bay, was charged May 30 with five felony counts of theft in a business setting. Two two counts allege theft of more than $10,000, and three counts involve amounts of $2,500 to $5,000. The five counts are for each of the last five years and total 175 checks between Jan. 25, 2009, through Feb. 27, 2013, according to a report he provided to the church that is now part of the criminal complaint.

He is accused of writing checks to himself and depositing them into his personal account.

Lash is a freelance performing arts critic and correspondent whose work has appeared in Your Key to the Door Weekly and the Door County Advocate. The church where he formerly worked as treasurer is St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 2339 Canterbury Lane, Sister Bay. The rector of St. Lukes, the Rev. Barbara Sajna, contributes a “Faith Perspective” column for the Advocate.

According to the complaint, the thefts were uncovered by an Associated Bank employee who thought it odd that the church’s checks from Baylake Bank were being deposited into Lash’s personal account at Associated. The bank employee called Sajna on Feb. 28, and Sajna then discovered the money was missing.

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Category: Church Security

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