Golay pleads not guilty to theft

Published on Thu, Mar 24, 2011 by By Jeremy Schwartz

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Glenn Golay, former treasurer of the Birch Bay Water and Sewer District, has pleaded not guilty to 16 counts of first-degree theft stemming from his alleged embezzlement of $469,000 from the district over the last seven years.

Golay’s trial has been set for Monday, May 23, in Whatcom County Superior Court. When reached by phone, Golay’s attorney, Sheila Bommakanti, declined to comment.

District manager Roger Brown fired Golay on January 11, after Golay told Brown a state audit then underway would uncover Golay’s theft. Golay, a certified public accountant, had been the district’s treasurer for 23 years.

County prosecuting attorney James Hulbert said he has not yet decided what sentence he will seek in prosecuting Golay. While the maximum sentence for first-degree theft is 10 years in prison, Hulbert explained someone with no criminal history convicted of such a felony could serve as little as 90 days.

However, if Golay is convicted of each count of theft, Hulbert said each conviction would act as criminal history and could influence the sentencing judge in the case to seek a stiffer penalty.