FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – A former Heritage High School basketball coach accused of stealing roughly $5,500 of the team’s money pleaded guilty to a felony count of theft Friday in exchange for a suspended prison sentence, according to Allen Superior Court documents.
Adam C. Gray, 32, is accused of using roughly $1,500 of the team’s funds to buy fast food, pay for haircuts, purchase at least one golf product and to lend money at a casino, court documents said.
He gave another $4,000 to his mother and his wife, according to those court documents.
Allen County prosecutors charged Gray with a Level 6 felony count of theft in September.
The plea deal filed in Allen Superior Court calls for him to be given a two-year suspended prison sentence and serve two years on probation. If a judge accepts the plea deal at his sentencing on Nov. 17, he could be ordered to pay an as of yet set amount of restitution.
And while a conviction will be recorded as a felony, that could be lowered to a misdemeanor if Gray completes unspecified special conditions in the next year and a half as part of his probation, according to court documents.
According to investigators, Gray had access to the Heritage High School basketball team’s bank account while he was head coach at the school for five seasons.
Gray is accused of using the account’s one debit card to make various purchases for himself from November 2022 to April 2023, according to court documents.
An investigator asked Gray if he could account for these purchases, and Gray said in court documents he didn’t know if he could. So, the investigator went through Gray’s bank statements with Gray present, court documents said.
Some of the money went to snacks and fast food, according to court documents. A personal transaction at an Ohio golf course was also made, as well as several transactions that went for haircuts at local barber shops, court documents said.
Gray said in court documents he accidentally used the debit card for a transaction at an automotive shop and that he used the account to give money to another person at a casino with the assumption that person would pay him back.
That person never did, court documents said.
Gray wrote a check for $2,000 that went to his mother for payment for a vacation, according to court documents, and another check for $2,000 to his wife he claimed was for reimbursement for items purchased for the team.
When asked if he had receipts for these items, Gray replied with a simple “no” in court documents. He also admitted he had access to the account beginning in 2018.
This past April, Gray left the Heritage program after he was hired to coach Bluffton High School’s basketball team.
He stepped down roughly two months later and left Bluffton citing personal reasons.