PLUM, Pa. (KDKA) – A Plum Borough School District teacher is on administrative after being accused of stealing from his neighbor’s home.
Plum Police have filed charges against 47-year-old Michael Verrico and his wife Heather. Court papers claim on January first the couple and a 17-year-old went into the unlocked garage of their neighbor’s foreclosed home in the 600 block of Presque Isle Drive in Plum. Investigators said the Verricos told the teen to grab bed sheets while they took five suits, a washing machine, and a broom.READ MORE: Amendment Made To Pittsburgh's CROWN Act
“The most twisted tale I’ve seen in a long time about something that’s a nothing,” Michael’s attorney Phil DiLucente said.
Nicole Nino is representing his wife Heather. Both attorneys said the whole story is a fabrication and is an attack on their clients character and integrity.
“He has money,” DiLucente said in his downtown office. “He does not need to steal suits from his neighbor’s house.”
Police said it took until December to file charges because the victim moved and became hard to find. Court papers allege the Verricos lied to police when interviewed and attempted to stop three minors who claim they witnessed the couple destroy evidence.
“This is absurd, preposterous, and I don’t think anybody believes it,” DiLucente said.READ MORE: Shaler And North Allegheny Girls Basketball Teams Take Stand Against Racism
He and Nino said their clients are law-abiding citizens who have done no wrong. They want the preliminary hearing to bring the truth to this situation.
“We’re looking forward to our day in court in order to prove that side of the story, and the right side quite frankly,” Nino told KDKA.
Charges include burglary, theft, and corruption of a minor.
“Quite frankly, it’s a travesty that these charges were filed,” Nino said.
The Plum School District released this statement.
“The Plum Borough School District was made aware of a criminal complaint filed against one of our employees by the Plum Borough Police Department. The employee has been placed on administrative leave. After reviewing the complaint, the alleged incident occurred outside the scope of the individual’s professional duties and is no way related to any District responsibilities. The Plum Borough School District will take every step possible to maintain the health, safety and welfare of our students and staff.”MORE NEWS: 1 Dead After Shooting At Washington County Convenience Store
“Never did anything horrible in his life and to be faced with this right now with suspension on paid leave, it’s very, very upsetting to him and his family,” DiLucente said.