Niles funeral director sentenced for pre-pay scam - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Niles funeral director sentenced for pre-pay scam

Posted: Updated:
A Niles funeral director, who ran what authorities called a “pre-pay funeral scam”, has been sentenced to three years behind bars.

When Robert McDermott, 52, of Niles, was sentenced on Wednesday in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court, the judge also ordered him to make $172,800 restitution.  McDermott admitted his guilt in May to 10 of the 19 counts against him.

Prosecutors said the victims trusted that McDermott would put their money into a trust account to eventually pay for funeral arrangements. However, the money disappeared.

McDermott apologized to the victims who waited in court to learn his sentence.

"I'm very, very sorry to the people that are effected by this, it was not intent to harm them," McDermott said. "I always provided everybody with their service, if not extra."

But Chuck Morrow, Trumbull County Assistant Prosecutor, said McDermott mismanaged more than $250,000, much of which is still unaccounted for. In some cases, insurance companies are stepping in to assume contracts signed with McDermott.

The charges McDermott plead guilty to include; theft of the elderly, grand theft, forgery, and tampering with evidence. McDermott was stripped of his funeral license by the state when it was discovered he failed to properly fund the pre-paid funerals. 

After McDermott completes his sentence, he'll be placed on probation for five years.

Also in court, Vanessa Niekamp, Executive Director of the Ohio Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors.

She said this case alone has forced some consumers to think twice about pre-paying for final resting expenses.
  • More NewsMore>>

  • UPDATED

    Death toll linked to defective GM ignition rises from 13 to 19

    Death toll linked to defective GM ignition rises from 13 to 19

    Nineteen fatalities are among the accidents that General Motors has deemed eligible for compensation due to defective ignition switches in certain GM automobiles including the Lordstown made Chevy Cobalt.More >>
    Nineteen fatalities are among the accidents that General Motors has deemed eligible for compensation due to defective ignition switches in certain GM automobiles including the Lordstown made Chevy Cobalt.More >>
  • How you can help local food banks feed the hungry by simply voting on Facebook

    How you can help local food banks feed the hungry by simply voting on Facebook

    The Valley came through in a big way when WalMart offered to help the nation's food banks and now the challenge is back with a new fighting hunger initiative offering $60,000. You can help feed the hungry simply by voting each day until October 5th.WalMart has issued a "Fight Hunger, Spark Change," challenge. It is giving $60,000 to 50 food banks around the country that get the most votes.Second Harvest Food Bank of the Mahoning Valley says your vote will help feed up to $15,000 people each w...More >>
    The Valley came through in a big way when WalMart offered to help the nation's food banks and now the challenge is back with a new fighting hunger initiative offering $60,000. You can help feed the hungry simply by voting each day until October 5th.WalMart has issued a "Fight Hunger, Spark Change," challenge. It is giving $60,000 to 50 food banks around the country that get the most votes.Second Harvest Food Bank of the Mahoning Valley says your vote will help feed up to $15,000 people each w...More >>
  • Man steps in front of truck, sets himself on fire

    Man steps in front of truck, sets himself on fire

    Monday, September 15 2014 8:53 PM EDT2014-09-16 00:53:16 GMT
    OBERLIN, Ohio (AP) - Authorities say a man stepped in front of a passing truck on a northeast Ohio highway, was struck, then somehow managed to retrieve a container of gasoline, swallowed some and set himself on fire as three young children sat in his car.In a video posted online by The Chronicle-Telegram in Elyria, Ohio State Highway Patrol Lt. Travis Hughes says a passing motorist stopped and extinguished the blaze. The man was struck around 10:30 a.m. Monday on U.S. 20 in Oberlin, about 35...More >>
    OBERLIN, Ohio (AP) - Authorities say a man stepped in front of a passing truck on a northeast Ohio highway, was struck, then somehow managed to retrieve a container of gasoline, swallowed some and set himself on fire as three young children sat in his car.In a video posted online by The Chronicle-Telegram in Elyria, Ohio State Highway Patrol Lt. Travis Hughes says a passing motorist stopped and extinguished the blaze. The man was struck around 10:30 a.m. Monday on U.S. 20 in Oberlin, about 35...More >>
  • Ohio/Pennsylvania NewsMore>>

  • Man steps in front of truck, sets himself on fire

    Man steps in front of truck, sets himself on fire

    Monday, September 15 2014 7:14 PM EDT2014-09-15 23:14:38 GMT
    OBERLIN, Ohio (AP) - Authorities say a man stepped into traffic on a northeast Ohio highway and then set himself on fire. Ohio State Highway Patrol officials say 28-year-old Hugo Ramos of Cleveland pulled to the side of the highway, stepped into the road and was hit by a truck. Ramos then got up, retrieved a container of gasoline from his car, swallowed some of it, poured the rest on his body and then set himself on fire as three children sat in his car. Officials say a bystander extinguishe...More >>
    OBERLIN, Ohio (AP) - Authorities say a man stepped into traffic on a northeast Ohio highway and then set himself on fire. Ohio State Highway Patrol officials say 28-year-old Hugo Ramos of Cleveland pulled to the side of the highway, stepped into the road and was hit by a truck. Ramos then got up, retrieved a container of gasoline from his car, swallowed some of it, poured the rest on his body and then set himself on fire as three children sat in his car. Officials say a bystander extinguishe...More >>
  • Police: Man lying in road struck by car, killed

    Police: Man lying in road struck by car, killed

    Monday, September 15 2014 10:29 AM EDT2014-09-15 14:29:55 GMT
    HERMINIE, Pa. (AP) - Authorities say a man apparently lying in the road in front of a western Pennsylvania high school was struck and killed by a car. Officials in Westmoreland County said the accident happened shortly after 1:40 a.m. Monday in front of Yough High School in Sewickley Township. State police said the pedestrian was apparently lying in the northbound lane of Lowber Road when he was hit by a car. Police said the driver reported seeing what appeared to be an object in the road an...More >>
    HERMINIE, Pa. (AP) - Authorities say a man apparently lying in the road in front of a western Pennsylvania high school was struck and killed by a car. Officials in Westmoreland County said the accident happened shortly after 1:40 a.m. Monday in front of Yough High School in Sewickley Township. State police said the pedestrian was apparently lying in the northbound lane of Lowber Road when he was hit by a car. Police said the driver reported seeing what appeared to be an object in the road an...More >>
  • Central Ohio teen shot to death

    Central Ohio teen shot to death

    Monday, September 15 2014 9:58 AM EDT2014-09-15 13:58:15 GMT
    COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A central Ohio teenager was shot to death over the weekend. The Franklin County coroner identified the victim as 17-year-old Reb Barbee. Police say the teen was shot at about 5 a.m. Sunday in Prairie Township west of Columbus. Friends and neighbors told reporters that Barbee stumbled into his home leaving a trail of blood. The Franklin County Sheriff's Office hasn't released any details of the shooting and hasn't announced an arrest. Copyright 2014 The Associated Press....More >>
    COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A central Ohio teenager was shot to death over the weekend. The Franklin County coroner identified the victim as 17-year-old Reb Barbee. Police say the teen was shot at about 5 a.m. Sunday in Prairie Township west of Columbus. Friends and neighbors told reporters that Barbee stumbled into his home leaving a trail of blood. The Franklin County Sheriff's Office hasn't released any details of the shooting and hasn't announced an arrest. Copyright 2014 The Associated Press....More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WFMJ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms