Charges Moving Forward For Former Albany County Attorney Richard Bohling
Charges against former Albany County Attorney Richard Bohling, including six felonies and three misdemeanors, were bound over to Albany County District Court on Friday, February 20. The charges stem from allegations that Bohling misused county funds.
On Friday, Bohling waived his preliminary hearing, which would have determined if enough evidence exists to move the case forward to district court. Because he waived this hearing, the charges are all moving forward.
Currently, Bohling faces charges of four felony counts of Larceny, one felony count of Wrongful Taking or Disposing of Property and one felony count of Submitting False Vouchers.
The state has requested to amend the four Larceny counts to four counts of Obtaining Property by False Pretenses, also a felony. The request to amend those charges was filed on Friday, February 20. The charges cannot be amended until a judge is assigned to the case who can sign off on the order. According to the Motion to Amend, the State has requested the changes so that “the State’s legal theory may better match the facts of this case.” Bohling’s defense attorneys can choose to object to the amendments.
Both Larceny and Obtaining Property by False Pretense are punishable of up to 10 years imprisonment, up to a $10,000 fine, or both. Wrongful Taking of Disposing of Property is also punishable of up to ten years imprisonment, up to a $10,000, or both. Submitting False Vouchers is punishable of up to two years imprisonment, up to a $2,000 fine, or both.
Misdemeanor charges include Official Misconduct (punishable of a fine up to $750), Wrongful Appropriation of Public Property (punishable of up to one year imprisonment, a $1,000 fine, or both), and Misuse of Office (punishable of up to a $1,000 fine).
According to court documents filed in Albany County District Court, a “quiet audit” of the spending in the Albany County Attorney’s Office was conducted, and a list was created of 196 items purchased between August 3, 2011 and November 5, 2013. Out of those items, only 15 could be identified by a confidential source as being used in the office. The remaining 181 items on the list totaled about $14,690.68.
According to court documents, after Bohling received a phone call telling him there was an investigation into “purchasing irregularities,” agents observed that as Bohling drove between his office and his home he was “driving evasively, not taking a direct route between the two, repeatedly driving around the same block, stopping and going, and appeared to be looking around as if to detect surveillance.”
Documents also allege that a confidential informant told investigators that Bohling was talking about “grabbing everything and throwing it in bags to bring back to the office.” Bohling was later observed by investigators bringing a red backpack, a large luggage bag and a smaller bag into the courthouse.
In addition, documents say that a forensic accounting analysis of financial records indicated that Bohling had purchased at least three cameras and several camera accessories with county funds. Those cameras were located in the office during a search on May 1, 2014.
Additionally, it was found that Bohling had purchased a membership at the Laramie Rifle Range using funds from the Albany County Attorney’s Office petty cash fund.
A date for Bohling’s arraignment has not yet been set.
Bohling remains released on a $10,000 signature bond.