Louis Elmy recently resigned from his Luzerne County prison position, but he won’t be considered for a county pension until the federal charges against him are resolved, a county official said.
Elmy, who was a county prison counselor and former Wilkes-Barre Area School Board member, was charged in February with distribution and possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine and possessing a firearm while being a habitual drug user.
He resigned from the $58,413-a-year county position on March 31, records show.
County pension coordinator Rick Hummer said Friday his office won’t process any pension-related requests for Elmy because the charges against Elmy could affect his eligibility.
The state’s pension forfeiture act precludes public employees from receiving a pension if they are convicted of certain crimes related to their employment.
It’s unclear if Elmy’s alleged crack distribution was linked to his prison employment because the FBI has not publicly released an affidavit detailing the actions that led to the charges.
County officials have refused to pay pensions or interest earnings on employee pension contributions several times in recent years due to charges against former employees.
The most recent example involved Stacey McGlone, a former probation services employee who pleaded guilty to theft in 2014.
Former employees who cash out pension contributions early are entitled to receive additional interest, but McGlone lost her claim on interest by law because her theft was tied to her county employment, officials said.
Elmy, 51, of Wilkes-Barre, has been free on bail since his arrest and is being represented by a public defender due to his financial situation. His financial application seeking a publicly funded attorney was sealed.
The county administration placed Elmy on administrative leave without pay at the time the charges were filed.
Elmy’s preliminary hearing was continued until May to allow for talks about a potential plea agreement, court paperwork said.
The drug charge carries a fine of up to $1 million and 20 years in prison. The firearm possession charge carries a maximum fine of $250,000 and 10 years in prison.
Reach Jennifer Learn-Andes at 570-991-6388 or on Twitter @TLJenLearnAndes.