Insurance manager sent to prison for stealing funds

An ex-manager for Nationwide Insurance was sentenced today to one to three years in state prison for stealing nearly $300,000 from the company during his six years in the Elmsford branch.

The prison sentence for Robert Wirchansky of Yonkers (pictured left) came after he failed to pay any restitution in the case. If he had repaid at least $165,000, he would have been sentenced to six months in the Westchester County jail as part of a five-year “shock” probation sentence.

Wirchansky, 50, cashed bogus insurance claims checks that he had written himself. He told investigators that he stole the money to pay for his wife’s medical bills after she was hurt in a car crash, according to court papers.

The indictment accused him of writing out a $10,000 check from Nationwide to Gerard Werchewski, a $9,000 check to Helen Woshensky, and a $9,000 check to Edward Brown. He changed the names on checks to reflect variations of his own name, then deposited the money into his personal account.

The fraud was discovered after Wirchansky left the company in 2006. He was accused of pilfering $296,808 from Nationwide. He pleaded guilty in August to a four-count felony indictment charging him with second-degree grand larceny and forgery.

Rebecca Baker

Rebecca Baker joined The Journal News in March 2004. She covers Eastchester, Bronxville and Tuckahoe, and was previously the state and county courts reporter in Westchester County. In prior jobs, she covered the Town of Greenburgh and Rockland County government and politics. Before coming to The Journal News, she was a municipal reporter for newspapers in New Haven, Conn. and Warren, Ohio.