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Boggs investigates impersonation incident
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
By Tyler Kolesar Staff Writer
WEST DECATUR - Peculiar circumstances that the Boggs Township Supervisors have been dealing with were aired during yesterday afternoon's monthly supervisors meeting.
Chairman Bill Dickson said last month, the supervisors denied a request from Tax Collector Phyllis Bush to reimburse her for attending courses being held in York tomorrow and Thursday. This was due to the fact that free training was taking place in Morrisdale on Oct. 5 and Bush only collects five percent of her taxes from the county.
Dickson said on Sept. 12 at 7:48 a.m., a man called the township building and identified himself as Rick Allen of the Justice Department, located in Washington, D.C. Dickson said he was not in the building at the time and Secretary Denise Dobo fielded the call. Dickson said something didn't add up, as he doesn't think any job of that type opens up before 8 a.m. or 9 a.m. Allen then called back at 9:01 a.m. that day and told Dickson he "wanted to know what's going on between you and the tax collector." Dickson told him he would not discuss the matter over the phone, but rather would do so face to face.
Dickson said he became mad over this fact, but Allen said he may be in Pennsylvania the following day and said he would call back later. Dickson said things didn't "jive," stating Allen called him "Bill." In official documents, Dickson always signs his first name as William. Another red flag was the tone of Allen's voice and his "choice of words."
Dickson then called Allen at 11 a.m. that day and asked if he had decided on what time the two would be meeting the next day. Dickson said Allen "stuttered and stammered a bit" and said he would call back between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. Dobo also said the phone call had an 814 area code come up instead of a Washington, D.C. number, which raised yet another red flag.
Dickson said they contacted the office of State Senator John Wozniak, D-35 of Johnstown and relayed the information, as well as the office of U.S. Representative Glen Thompson, R-5 of Howard. When they got back to Dickson, they said the Justice Department told them they have three "Ricks" working for them, but no "Rick Allen". The phone number was traced back to being registered in Altoona under Central Carpentry Services.
Advised by Wozniak's office, the supervisors then went to the state police and told them the story. About a week later, Dickson said police got a hold of the man claiming to be Rick Allen. However, the actual person was determined to be a West Decatur resident.
"It's still under investigation," Dickson said.
A citizen then asked what would be the purpose of all of this.
"That's what we don't understand," said Dickson. He said the resident had attended a meeting in September and said things in Bush's favor when the supervisors denied her reimbursement.
Dickson said police consider that as harassment and impersonating a federal employee, which can have severe consequences.
In other news, trick-or-treat night will be held on Oct. 31 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. All participating homes are asked to have their porch lights on. The supervisors also appointed Ben Burns to Wallaceton-Boggs Municipal Authority board, replacing Jesse Weitoish, and relieved Williams Inspection of their Code Enforcement duties, instead going with Pennsafe Building Inspections.
The next regular meeting will be held Nov. 12 at 4 p.m. at the township building.
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