News

Felony theft charges dropped in animal rescue case

Nicole Covage faces new charges

MONTROSE, SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) - Its been nearly four months since felony theft charges were filed against the operator of an animal rescue group that was based in Susquehanna County.

On Monday afternoon, those charges against Nicole Covage of Pocono Summit were withdrawn.

The 29-year-old isn't completely out of legal trouble just yet.

Nicole Covage walked into a magistrate's office in Montrose Monday facing four felony counts of theft and receiving stolen property.

In court, prosecutors dropped the charges without having a hearing.

"There was no theft and now the DA's Office is acknowledging that," defense attorney Bill Thompson said.

In December, detectives originally said Covage pocketed more than $5,000 in donations that were given to her charity, the "Fall in Ruv" animal rescue group.

Covage's attorney says his client didn't steal a penny and had receipts to back up all of her expenses.

"Nicole has been chastised in the media, on social media, her family has received death threats. She lost her job because of these allegations," Thompson said.

Even though the felony theft charges were tossed Monday, a new set of criminal charges was filed against Covage.

She now is facing two misdemeanor charges of not keeping proper records.

Detectives say Covage didn't hand over over financial records to state officials last September when requested to.

"It's a good example of someone that has tried to do the right thing, tried to help with her community, help animals, where maybe she got in over her head and she's being punished for trying to do something positive," Thompson said.

While Covage wanted her attorney to speak on her behalf, as she left court Monday afternoon she did consider what happened Monday a "win."

"I knew in the long run it was going to come out the right way, so, I just waited. Patience is a virtue," Nicole Covage said outside the courthouse.

Covage is expected back in court next Monday on the new charges filed.

Susquehanna County DA Marion O'Malley says her office is working with the Pennsylvania Department of State on the new charges filed Monday.

All charities and non-profits are required to provide financial records when asked by the state, even up to three years after they close or shut down.

 


Don't Miss

  • Text Alerts
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Spa Week
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Community Appearance
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Latest News

Video Center