Former Weston schools employees charged in fuel theft
WESTON — Two former schools employees have been charged with stealing fuel from the district.
On May 15, David Lustberg, former transportation coordinator for Weston Public Schools, turned himself into Weston police for allegedly taking fuel from the Board of Education fuel pumps to use in his personal vehicles.
Rocco Popoli, a former school grounds foreperson, also turned himself in on a warrant in connection with the theft. This comes two months after Lustberg and Popoli were fired after an investigation revealed they had been stealing fuel for some time, according to the district.
Lustberg was also removed from his role as coach of the Weston High School softball team.
Police began investigating following a complaint made by a schools employee that Popoli was using fuel from the pumps. According to the arrest affidavit, video footage showed Popoli on nine separate incidents taking a total 98.9 gallons of fuel worth $202.75, dating back to May 2018.
While reviewing security footage, police observed Lustberg also putting fuel into his personal vehicles.
The document states there is video footage of Lustberg on 37 separate incidents taking a total of 356 gallons of fuel worth $711.30, dating back to May 2018.
According to a written statement by Weston Director of Human Resources Lewis Brey, Lustberg took gasoline in the evenings after school hours during the school week. During the summer, school vacations and on weekends, he occasionally did so during the day, Brey wrote.
Lustberg was originally hired as an energy consultant for the district before eventually assuming the additional role of transportation coordinator. As part of his duties, he would drive the bus routes and and drive around campus “quite a bit,” according to the affidavit.
Lustberg was able to access the fuel pumps through three master keys issued to him, the report said.
Lustberg and Popoli were both charged with second-degree larceny and scheduled to appear for arraignment in state Superior Court in Norwalk on May 24.