A Suffolk County jury deliberated for about an hour Monday before finding former Sachem High School North head football coach David Falco guilty of filing bogus timesheets to steal money from the school district.
Falco, 53, filed timesheets requesting $5,755.68 in compensation for supervising weight room sessions at Sachem North between Dec. 8, 2017, and Jan. 15, 2018, work that was actually done by his assistant coaches, Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy Sini said Monday.
“We hold our public servants to a standard of trust, that they will serve the public in good faith,” Sini said. “When they break that trust, we need to hold them accountable.”
Falco told the assistant coaches who supervised the weight room sessions they would not be compensated for the work they performed.
“He was essentially stealing from his colleagues,” Sini said.
Falco, of Center Moriches, was charged with third-degree larceny, public corruption, corrupting the government in the third degree and other charges in a seven-count indictment unsealed in November. Falco faces up to five-to-15 years in prison when he returns to Suffolk criminal court in Riverhead on Nov. 12 for sentencing.
Sini said the jury was able to reach a speedy decision because prosecutor Laura De Oliveira presented her case “very clearly and effectively.” Falco’s attorney, John Scott Prudenti of Center Moriches, did not respond to requests for comment.
Sachem superintendent Kenneth Graham declined to comment, calling it a personnel matter.
Falco has been on paid administrative leave since his arrest in November 2018. Graham said at the time Falco "has been reassigned to home pending the outcome of the legal process."
The 1984 Sachem North graduate coached the Sachem North football team for 15 seasons until his resignation in August 2018 just days before the start of the season. He also was the school's physical education chairman.
Falco started at the school in 1996. He coached the football team to a 82-58 record after taking over in 2003 and won the 2013 Long Island Championship.