Salt Lake County prosecutors filed criminal charges Tuesday against a one-time Utah Transit Authority employee, alleging he pilfered thousands of dollars in buckets of coins from UTA bus fare boxes and exchanged them for spending cash at an area Walmart.
David Leroy Healy, 54, of West Jordan, faces one felony charge each of theft and money laundering and seven counts of misusing public funds.
Healy had worked as a fare-equipment maintenance worker for UTA since 2014 when, according to court documents, a neighbor spotted him carrying buckets from his UTA vehicle into the garage of his West Jordan home, then converting large amounts of coins to cash in a Walmart coin-exchange machine.
When the neighbor asked a Walmart cashier about it, the store worker said Healy did it often and owned an arcade.
While under surveillance between Sept. 12 and Sept. 20, the UTA employee was allegedly seen entering parked buses at the authority’s Central and Meadowbrook bus garages and removing coins or entire fare boxes and then transporting them to his home.
According to court documents, Healy would sometimes exchange large volumes of coins and deposit sums of cash in $1 dollar bills into several credit unions accounts. On other occasions during those same trips, police said, he was seen running errands and paying entirely with $1 and $10 dollar bills.
On Sept. 22, authorized by a search warrant, detectives with UTA’s police force installed a digital video camera inside Healy’s work van, documents say. Officers said they noticed 16 fare boxes in the vehicle’s cargo section while putting the camera in.
Between Sept. 23 and Sept. 27, Healy was allegedly seen repeatedly removing fare boxes, driving them to his house and carrying coins into his garage in the same white bucket, which, in one case, was so full the coins were visible.
Analysis of Healy’s bank records by police revealed a history of nearly $297,969 in cash deposits to three credit union accounts since 2014. Those accounts saw a significant increase in deposits starting in late 2018, court documents state, sometimes involving thousands of dollars in separate deposits over the course of one day.
Police say that Healy earned between $53,000 and $57,000 annually in his position as a public employee with UTA. It was unclear late Tuesday whether he was still employed by the agency.
Separate documents indicate Healy was being held late Tuesday at the Salt Lake County jail. Bail is set at $50,000.