Big theft ruins little league season

CLAYTON, N.J. - August 10, 2011

Parent Janice Rael is disappointed to hear former Clayton Little League coach and treasurer Joseph Schlosser was arrested and charged with stealing almost $23,000 from the league.

"He seemed very dedicated to the kids and to the little league program. I can' believe this is really true," Rael said.

Investigators say several times over the past two years, the man whose son was also a player withdrew cash out of the league's bank account and went on a personal spending spree.

In May, vendors complained they weren't being paid and checks were bouncing.

Because of the theft, league president Chris Bainbridge says he had to cancel the upcoming season for the approximate 250 young athletes.

"The community has stepped up through fundraising and help through the borough and everything. We are starting to build ourselves back up so by next season we will be back," Bainbridge said.

Schlosser had nothing to say when Action News went to his home.

Meanwhile, Rael is upset her children won't be able to play ball this year and she's hoping the league now has some checks and balances in place.

"I just can't believe they didn't have some type of measures in place to prevent this from happening," Rael said.

The league president says not only is there a new treasurer, but he and the vice president now look over bank statements.

As for the former treasurer, he was released from jail yesterday on $2,500 bail.

Anyone interested in helping the league can send donations to:

Clayton Little League
P.O. Box 133
Clayton, NJ 08312

More information can be found on the league's website: http://www.claytonlittleleague.com/

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