A firefighter with the Perry Volunteer Fire Department was arrested Wednesday on theft charges after she allegedly used a fire department gas card to put fuel in her personal vehicle for more than a year.
Aimee Jo Bane, 46, of 1924 Evelyn St., Perry, was charged with second-degree theft and nonfelonious misconduct in office.
According to court records, Bane allegedly “used a Perry Fire Department fuel card to fill her personal vehicle with fuel” between March 2022 and March 2023 to the tune of about $3,000 in gas.
Bane allegedly “admitted to participating in this crime and was observed on surveillance at the Kwik Star in Perry,” according to court records.
According to a statement released Thursday by the Perry City Hall, the suspicious fuel charges were discovered in mid-March 2023, and the matter was turned over for investigation to the Dallas County Sheriff’s office and the office of the Iowa State Auditor.
A warrant for Bane’s arrest was ordered Wednesday in Dallas County District Court and served Wednesday.
The retired chief of the Perry Volunteer Fire Department was also arrested on a Dallas County warrant Wednesday in connection with the incident.
Chris Matthew Hinds, 67, of 308 Lucinda St., Perry, was charged with nonfelonious misconduct in office.
According to court records, Hinds allegedly “knowingly permitted” Bane to buy gas “for her personal vehicle.”
A warrant for Hinds’ arrest was ordered Wednesday in Dallas County District Court and served Wednesday.
“The allegations of this investigation do not align with the city of Perry’s core values of professionalism and integrity, accountability and being a good steward of the funds we are entrusted with,” said Perry City Administrator Sven Peterson. “No matter the dollar amount, it is our responsibility to constantly be on the lookout for misuse of resources and hold those involved accountable for their actions. I want to commend our staff in noticing these unusual charges on our fleet cards out of thousands of transactions over this time frame. I also want to thank the Dallas County Sheriff’s office for their assistance with this investigation.”
As a result of the investigation, Peterson said the Perry City Hall “reviewed internal processes and procedures and has implemented additional review steps for fuel card purchases by each department.”
*A criminal charge is merely an accusation, and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.