Share this article

print logo

Hamburg bookkeeper admits embezzling $263,000 for gambling habit

By Melinda Miller


A Hamburg bookkeeper admitted she stole more than a quarter million dollars from an employer – for the second time – when she appeared in Erie County Court Thursday afternoon.

Joan Joyce, 57,of Manor Lane pleaded guilty as charged to grand larceny in the second degree and to five counts of offering a false instrument, which refers to her tax returns, for the years 2010-15.

Joyce embezzled $263,135 over the course of seven years while working for ECC Electrical Construction, said prosecutor Brian P. Dassero of the DA’s Financial Crimes Bureau.

Joyce is believed to have used company checks to make payments on a personal loan, purchase computers, put a down payment on a Toyota RAV4, and to pay the credit card bills she incurred because of her gambling habit.

Joyce will be sentenced as a second felony offender because of her prior grand larceny conviction for stealing from her previous employer, Lakeshore Metals.

In accepting her plea, Judge Kenneth F. Case committed to a sentencing range of 4 to 8 years in prison.

Joyce remains free on $50,000 bond, and her attorneys indicated she hopes to be able to pay some amount of restitution before sentencing May 12.