Attorney General Paula T. Dow and Criminal Justice Director Stephen J. Taylor announced that Donald R. Codey Jr., former president and general manager of Freehold Raceway Park, pleaded guilty today to stealing $3,045 in raceway promotional vouchers and assisting two patrons to cash more than $1.3 million in bad checks at the track. Codey is the brother of former New Jersey Senate President Richard Codey.
According to Director Taylor, Codey, 65, of Orange, pleaded guilty before Superior Court Judge Thomas F. Scully in Monmouth County to third-degree theft by unlawful taking for the theft of vouchers. Codey admitted that he stole 16 “Mystery Vouchers” worth a total of $3,045. Mystery Vouchers were sent by Freehold Raceway to track patrons and patrons of the Favorites off-track wagering site in Toms River. Each voucher was issued to be redeemable for a “mystery” amount, ranging from $2 to $5,000, if taken to the Favorites site on President’s Day, Feb. 16, 2009, and used to gamble. Codey used the vouchers to gamble at Favorites that day.
Codey also pleaded guilty to two counts of fourth-degree issuing bad checks, one for each of the two patrons he assisted in cashing bad checks. The charges were contained in accusations filed by the Division of Criminal Justice Corruption Bureau as a result of an investigation by the New Jersey State Police. The state will recommend that Codey be sentenced to up to 364 days in jail as a condition of a term of probation. Judge Scully scheduled sentencing for Oct. 22.
“Mr. Codey had an alliance with these two dishonest patrons and assisted them in cashing bad checks, which cost Freehold Raceway $1.3 million dollars,” said Attorney General Dow. “For that criminal conduct and the voucher theft, he faces up to a year in potential jail time and is responsible with his co-defendants for paying back about $900,000 which has not been repaid.”