A 61-year-old man and former Illinois Railway Museum volunteer must pay back the thousands of dollars he's accused of stealing from the volunteer-based organization.
Rod. L. Turner accepted a offer from the McHenry County State's Attorney's Office Thursday and pleaded guilty to theft of at least $10,000. In exchange for his plea, prosecutors dismissed additional charges against Turner, including 26 counts of forgery.
McHenry County Judge Robert Wilbrandt sentenced Turner on Thursday to two years of probation and 160 days at the McHenry County Jail.
Turner, of Geneseo, also must pay back the $28,767 police believe he acquired by exaggerating invoices that detailed work from companies that provided services such as steel and engine labor from December 2015 to October 2016, according to the complaint. A Nov. 1 court date has been set for a status on Turner's repayment of the funds.
Police arrested Turner in May 2018, after museum leaders' became concerned about potentially misappropriated funds.
The longtime volunteer's work with the museum ended in November 2016, after staff met with attorneys and hired forensic auditors to investigate their suspicions. At that time, Turner had been a volunteer at the museum for about 10 years and acted as the curator of the organization's electrical car department, museum officials have said.
Illinois Railway Museum representatives could not be reached for comment Friday.
The Union-based museum operates on about $1 million each year, not including the cost of equipment restoration projects, which largely are funded by donations, tax documents show.
Owned and operated entirely by volunteers, the museum receives no state or federal money. All of the organization's operating costs are paid by individual donations and profits from ticket sales, according to the website.