The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Local News

July 10, 2014

Dentist sues ex-employee, her husband

HEMPFIELD TOWNSHIP — When Teresa Young pleaded guilty to stealing money from her former employer, she agreed to repay $10,334.

Her former employer, Dr. Duane A. Gruber, has filed a civil suit alleging that she stole much more – about $1 million.

Gruber also sued Young’s husband, Wayne, alleging he conspired with her to steal the money and benefited from her illegal doings.

The Youngs deny that Wayne knew what his wife was doing, and agree with the accusations only so far as to what she admitted in her criminal case.

Gruber, a dentist, charged Mrs. Young with conversion, breach of fiduciary duty and fraud, and both Youngs, of 358 Kennard-Osgood Road, Sugar Grove Township, with conspiracy and unjust enrichment.

Gruber, whose dental practice is in Hempfield Township, said he was alerted by the IRS in about January 2011 of “significant financial irregularities.”

He hired a dental practice consultant to investigate the practice’s finances and come up with policies and procedures to improve management and productivity.

The consultant discovered that Young misappropriated funds, the suit said.

Gruber alleged Young manipulated financial records and patient bills, inflated supply purchasing, misappropriated cash payments and distorted bookkeeping, collections and billings.

Young denied the allegations, other then to admit writing 18 checks to herself or credit card companies for $8,600 on a Gruber account.

Gruber also alleged that Young contracted for better medical and vision benefits for herself, ordered excess dental supplies, gave her family and friends free dental care and manipulated office hours and payroll to receive additional and unearned pay for vacation days.

Young denied all of those allegations. She said all treatment received by family members complied with company policy, and that dental supplies were ordered by someone else.

Gruber charged that Young used the stolen money to buy horses and equipment and pay expenses for the family business, Young’s Performance Horses, allegations the Youngs denied.

As far as Wayne Young’s involvement, the Youngs said he had no knowledge of his wife’s illegal activities, and received no direct benefit from them.

The sides could not agree on Young’s duties during her 20 years with Gruber, with Young arguing she had far less control of the practice than Gruber alleged.

Notice of the suit was filed Jan. 28, 2013, while the complaint was not filed until May 1.

The Young’s filed their answer May 29, the day Mrs. Young was paroled from jail after being sentenced in November to serve 11è to 23 months.

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