Former Lynchburg deputy fire chief indicted on counts of embezzlement

LYNCHBURG Va. (WDBJ7) UPDATE: The former Lynchburg Fire Department Deputy Chief Jason Campbell has been indicted for embezzlement.

The indictment comes after an investigation into misappropriation of funds from the Lynchburg Fire Foundation.

The indictment lists 11 counts of embezzlement against Jason Campbell and alleges that between $60,000 and $70,000 was embezzled.

A hearing will be scheduled in the Lynchburg Circuit Court.

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ORIGINAL STORY 9/21/16

A private organization made up of Lynchburg firefighters, which raises money to fight breast cancer and promote other charitable causes, is being investigated for possibly misusing the money they collected.

The investigation started earlier this month when members of the Lynchburg Fire Foundation say they discovered what could be a possible misappropriation of funds.

The fire foundation's acting president, Jamie Maxwell, told WDBJ7 Wednesday that possible fraudulent activity may have been committed by a member of the foundation's board of directors.

"This person has been removed from the board and no longer has any ties to the Foundation," Maxwell said in a written statement.

The foundation board is made up entirely of firefighters and meets on city property, but Lynchburg city manager Bonnie Svrcek said the group is not affiliated with the city.

"This is a separate nonprofit that has a mission to support the Lynchburg Fire Department and the Lynchburg community, but it is not a city government function," Svrcek said.

The Fire Foundation gets no funding or donations from city hall, according to Maxwell.

"I want to be really clear that it is the Fire Foundation that asked for the investigation," said Svrcek.

Maxwell told WDBJ7 he wants the public to trust his group. He said they're "committed to working with the Lynchburg Police Department, Commonwealth Attorney's Office and the State Police."

Lynchburg Police have recommended that State Police take over the investigation to avoid any conflict of interest. Lynchburg's Commonwealth Attorney will make a final decision about whether the LPD recommendation should be passed along.

The investigation only pertains to the private Fire Foundation. It does not include the Lynchburg Fire Department.