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Man with 'criminal mindset' deserves 25- to 50-year jail term for grave marker con, court says

A con man with a “criminal mindset” who scammed grieving people out of hundreds of thousands of dollars in a grave marker fraud wasn’t punished too harshly with a 25- to 50-year prison term, a state appeals court found.

The fact that Edmund A. Grenier Jr. committed the crimes not once, but twice, helped convince the Superior Court judges to uphold the jail sentence imposed by Jefferson County President Judge John H. Foradora.

Grenier’s sordid tale was outlined in a recent opinion by Superior Court Judge Alice B. Dubow.

She noted that in 2004, Grenier, 71, of Clearfield, was sentenced to 5 years on probation after he conned victims out of about $500,000 by taking orders for grave markers that he never ordered or installed. In 205, he again pleaded guilty to deceptive business practice charges for running the same scam. That’s when he was slapped with the prison sentence.

Grenier, who ran the cons while serving as caretaker at Lakelawn Memorial Park in Reynoldsville, appealed to the state court, calling penalty “manifestly unreasonable.”

Dubow instead concluded that Foradora got it right. She cited the county judge’s observation that Grenier’s victims were “grieving, vulnerable people” and that Grenier was “heedless of their distress.”

Foradora also cited Grenier’s “criminal mindset” and what he deemed was an attempt by Grenier to con the court by blaming his wife and others for his crimes.

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