Every few weeks, it seems, we get another story about gumptious local folk who refuse to take the recession lying down. Sure, the glory days of the United States are all but over, but that doesn’t stop someone with a little derring-do from bucking the trend by robbing the living hell out of everyone around them.

To recap: Back in April, Eureka’s Tim Cochrane, a former president of Six Rivers National Bank, was fired from his job as a financial advisor at Summit Brokerage Services amid allegations that he stole funds from clients. (Coverage: Times-Standard, Advisors4Advisors.) Those clients have filed a civil suit against him.

At about the same time, Fortuna loan officer Delores Reeves was arrested on charges of bilking elderly people out of hundreds of thousands of dollars by inventing fake investments for them, then pocketing the money. (Please also see our friend Kym Kemp’s superb report from the subsequent civil suit.)

Then you’ve got the big, ongoing and still pretty hush-hush investigation into a staffer’s supposed theft of over $100,000 from the county’s Superior Court. Finally, you’ve got former Humboldt Crabs Coach Shorty Ames pleading guilty to skimming about $250,000 from the till at Pierson’s Building Center. 

This list probably doesn’t account for all of 2011 to-date, but it’s what I came up with off the top of my head.


Today’s installment comes to us courtesy of Crescent City’s The Daily Triplicate, which reports that the Del Norte County District Attorney’s Office has charged one Eileen Silvey, former manager of the Del Norte County Senior Center, with a whole smorgasbord of felony offenses — forgery, burglary and, yes, embezzlement — relating to her (mis)management of public funds that were intended to help out old folks.

The Triplicate’s long and detailed story shows that despite her alleged deeds, which some might consider trashy, Silvey had a certain sense of fashion:

“Court documents show Silvey used the [Senior Center’s] credit card to purchase a diamond tennis bracelet from JCPenney for $514.87, buy $479.99 worth of goods at Target, get her Dodge Durango detailed, buy hundreds of dollars worth of food including pizzas, donuts and other pastries, a full sheet cake, whole hams and turkeys, flowers, balloons and Hallmark cards.”

A state agency that gives out grants to help senior citizens weatherize their homes suspended its contract with the Senior Center, the Triplicate reports. In its place, Eureka’s Redwood Community Action Agency stepped up and extended its weatherization program to Del Norte County.