Former Cemetery Secretary/Treasurer’s Case Comes Up in Court

Brenda Grenier (Provided photo)

CLEARFIELD – A Virginia woman charged with theft in relation to the activities of two local cemeteries was back in court Tuesday.

Brenda Grenier, 58, formerly of Reynoldsville, along with her husband, Edmund Grenier ran Crown Crest Cemetery in Lawrence Township and Lakelawn Cemetery in Jefferson County.

In March she pleaded guilty before Judge Paul E. Cherry to theft by deception in one case and disorderly conduct in two other cases.

She was sentenced to time served or 11½ months to two years less one day in jail and four years consecutive probation. At that time, she was ordered to pay more than $27,000 in restitution.

On Tuesday a motion to reduce this amount was discussed in motions court.

Her attorney, Joseph Ryan, noted that the restitution amount originally ordered was for the victims. He clarified that she pleaded guilty to theft for taking funds from their company. She did not enter a plea for conspiring to take money from the victims. At the time of sentencing, Ryan stated that Edmund Grenier was taking responsibility for that.

According to previous reports, Grenier has been ordered to pay a total of more than $109,000 in restitution for his various cases.

Cherry agreed to amend his sentencing order to include only $2,721.50 in restitution.

Brenda Grenier has been incarcerated since she was taken into custody in March of last year on a warrant issued after she failed to appear for a preliminary hearing. She had to be extradited from Virginia.

According to the affidavits of probable cause, Edmund Grenier charged customers of Crown Crest Cemetery for granite bases and bronze plaques and failed to supply them. In some cases, the victims purchased the items to be placed in storage until they would be needed.

None of these items were delivered as expected, and Edmund Grenier told some of the victims that the bases and plaques were in a storage facility in Pittsburgh.

A few of the victims paid for additional information to be added onto standing bronze plaques and this service was not provided either.

A letter dated Sept. 12, 2013 that is signed by Brenda Grenier, identifies her as the secretary and treasurer of Grenier Enterprises Inc. and Crown Crest Cemeteries, according to the criminal complaint.

In June of 2014, she withdrew $7,577.55 from the business account. She admitted she took the funds because Edmund Grenier had stopped paying her a regular salary from the business.

Edmund A. Grenier Jr., 71, currently an inmate of state prison, pleaded guilty in January to felony counts of theft by deception in three cases.

He was sentenced to 42 months to seven years in state prison on each case by Cherry. The sentences will run concurrent with each other and with his current sentence.

In a fourth case, he pleaded guilty to theft by deception as a misdemeanor of the first degree. For this, he was given a concurrent term of 30 months to five years in state prison.

Over the past few years, Grenier has been charged several different times in both Clearfield County for Crown Crest Cemetery and in Jefferson County for Lakelawn Memorial Park for his failure to deliver various cemetery products. 

In January of 2015, he pleaded guilty in Clearfield County on two separate cases to felony counts of deceptive business practice, theft by failure to make required disposition of funds and theft by deception. Prior to that in Aug. 27, 2013, he pleaded guilty to deceptive business practices.

He pleaded guilty to two cases with the same charges in Jefferson County.

In addition to these sentences, Grenier is currently serving a state prison sentence of 25 to 50 years from a probation violation in Jefferson County that he was given in September of 2015.

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