Keystone HOA’s financial admin charged with embezzlement
Robert Dwight Polich, 62, the longtime financial administrator for a Keystone homeowners association, was arrested on Dec. 2 and charged with embezzling about $160,000 from the HOA.
Polich, who declined to comment on the charges, served as the Enclave Homeowners Association’s financial manager since 1986, when the neighborhood was founded.
According to the arrest affidavit, the trust Polich built up over decades was destroyed when an external audit last month revealed that $160,000 in Treasury bills was missing from the HOA’s surplus funds.
The association pays for an external audit every year, but this was the first year the missing funds were detected. Polich appears to have doctored the annual budgets to show the $160,000 in the association’s accounts.
Upon learning that the auditors had uncovered the discrepancy, Polich reached out to meet with members of the association board, the arrest affidavit says. Because most of the Enclave’s property owners live in Summit County on a part-time basis, only two members of the board were able to meet in person; one of them was Meredith Van Dyne.
On Nov. 21, Polich met with the two board members and told them he had taken the money back in 2008 because of personal financial difficulties relating to taxes, the arrest affidavit says.
It is unclear exactly what Polich did with the money. At one point in the arrest affidavit, he tells board members that it was being set aside for his daughter’s college fund; he later says that the money was put into a T. Rowe Price retirement fund in his wife’s name. Polich asks board members for forgiveness and a chance to pay the money back. He also offered to allow the association to put a lien on his $600,000 house, the affidavit says.
On Nov. 22, the HOA board removed Polich from his position and began working with sheriff’s office investigators to pursue charges against him.
On Nov. 26, a sheriff’s office investigator recorded a phone conversation between Van Dyne and Polich. During the conversation, Polich admits to taking the money and tells her that he will repay it by January.
When Van Dyne asks him why he didn’t tell them about the T-bills in 2008, Polich answered, according to the arrest affidavit, “I would hope I would never have to tell anybody about doing something like this. I just kept wanting to get this money back. And, you know, because the ramifications of it are so immense. … I would love to give you a logical reason for it, Meredith, but you know I can’t. I just hope that years and years of not, of doing everything but this one incident, although it’s a huge incident, has some …” He trails off.
Van Dyne reminds Polich that this was not the first time he was caught moving money around.
In 2010, Polich took $50,000 out of the association’s fund and lent the money to another homeowners association. By the time Enclave board members became aware of the missing funds, Polich had returned them. The association decided not to pursue the matter criminally.
Polich was arrested and booked into the Summit County jail on Dec. 2.
For the missing $160,000, Polich is being charged with theft of property greater than $100,000 in value, a class 3 felony. He is out of jail on $15,000 bond.
Sheriff John Minor lauded his detectives’ work in the case.
“They did an exceptional job thoroughly investigating this case,” he said in a written statement. “This is a true testament to the hard work and dedication that our agency strives to achieve.”
The Poliches’ company, Mountain Systems Inc., handles property and financial management for other homeowners associations in Colorado.
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