Police: Old Bridge couple stole thousands from 2 local PTAs, youth football league

Leonardo and Dana Marchetta were arrested on Monday and charged with theft, forgery, money laundering and falsifying records.

Chris Keating

Apr 9, 2024, 9:55 PM

Updated 49 days ago

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An Old Bridge Board of Education member and his wife are accused of stealing thousands of dollars from local parent-teacher associations and a youth football league. Leonardo and Dana Marchetta were arrested on Monday and charged with theft, forgery, money laundering and falsifying records.
The couple is accused of stealing $53,000. Old Bridge police said the Marchettas stole from the PTA of two schools and the Old Bridge Rebels football and cheer league. Police say the thefts started in 2022.
A lengthy investigation by local police found that the couple allegedly targeted the money belonging to the PTA of the Grissom Elementary School and the Salk Middle School. Just over $41,000 was taken from the PTA accounts, according to police.
The other target was the Old Bridge Rebels Football and Cheer League. That group suffered a loss of over $12,000.
Leonardo Marchetta is a current member of the Old Bridge School Board. Police say that his wife, Dana Marchetta, has been active and held positions with the PTA and football league.
Authorities say that Dana Marchetta is accused of embezzling funds and forging checks with falsified signatures. They say it’s alleged that she deposited the money into her husband's bank account.
Police say that Dana Marchetta also tried to cover up the theft by changing an Old Bridge Police Department incident report and then giving it to the PTA.
While picking up their children from the Grissom School on Tuesday, parents told News 12 New Jersey this was the first time they had been given details of the theft. But they had heard there was an ongoing investigation into the theft.
“To be honest with you it’s disgusting...It was a substantial amount. Basically they have to start from zero,” says parent John Schwall.
Brennan Donohue has two kindergarteners in the Grissom School.
“It’s pretty shameful. I don’t even know how you could think to do that. The kids went to the school so I don’t know what possesses you to think that would be OK,’ Donohue says.
Old Bridge Superintendent David Cittadino sent out a statement saying, “We trust in the judicial process to address this matter appropriately, and we look forward to swiftly moving past this incident, allowing our district and community to focus on our primary mission of serving children.”
The president of the Rebels also stated, “This is a very unfortunate situation……With over 400 children in spring flag football and over 300 kids in our fall football and cheer league, we will continue to keep our checks and balances in place to ensure that something like this will not happen again in the future.”
The Marchettas were arrested on Monday, given a summons and released. News 12 New Jersey did reach out for a response.
Police have to yet reveal what the couple did with the $53,000. Police started investigating the couple thanks to an anonymous tip.


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