A former Morris County employee allegedly used county-owned vehicles for her own personal use over the course of two years, going as far as affixing county seals with decals and trying to remove the seals from the vehicles, Acting Morris County Prosecutor Fredric Knapp said.
Hope Hezel, 44, of Phillipsburg, was charged with three counts of fourth degree unlawful taking of a conveyance. Between 2010 and 2012, Hezel was employed by Morris County as the Director of the Morris Area Paratransit System (MAPS).
The MAPS program is a county-run system that provides transportation to residents age 60 or older, or 18 and older that have disabilities.
Hezel was not authorized to use any county-owned vehicle unless directly related to her employment, Knapp said. Hezel allegedly used three different vehicles on various dates during the two-year time frame, knowing she was not permitted to do so, Knapp said.
The former employee allegedly took the vehicles out on personal errands outside her scheduled hours of work, Knapp said, and also took the vehicles to youth sporting events in Pennsylvania.
Anyone with information relating to these charges is urged to contact Detective Sasha Gould of the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Professional Standards Unit at 973-285-6200.