Ex-asst. chief accused of stealing money from charity

Dallas Morning News

LEWISVILLE, Texas — A former Lewisville assistant fire chief accused of stealing money intended for charity told police he was in debt and had an addiction problem.

Brian Freed was arrested last week by Lewisville police on a charge of theft of $1,500 to $20,000. He had been the coordinator for the department’s “Fill the Boot” campaign that collects donations for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, according to arrest documents.

The offense carries a penalty of six months to two years in state jail and up to a $10,000 fine.

Freed, who resigned his position May 21, could not be reached for comment. He had worked for the fire department since 1994.

On May 6, the fire department contacted police about a possible theft of money that was to go to the charity.

Police determined that two bags of cash, totaling more than $6,000, were missing from the collections, according to the probable cause affidavit.

During a police interview, Freed denied taking the money but told a detective that he had been placed on paid administrative leave in May because he was addicted to hydrocodone and Ambien.

He also said he frequently gambles and was $60,000 in debt, the affidavit stated.

Fifteen minutes after the police interview, Freed sent a text message to a city official resigning his position, effective immediately, records indicate.

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