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Politics and Government

Lazarus Sims, suspended Syracuse parks commissioner, charged with grand larceny

Syracuse’s suspended parks commissioner Lazarus Sims was arrested and arraigned in court this morning, charged with third-degree grand larceny, a felony. Sims is accused of stealing property worth more than $3,000.

The Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office started an investigation after an audit by City Auditor Marty Masterpole revealed discrepancies in the parks department’s permitting process.

Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said he is saddened for the city and for Sims. Walsh said Sims has done a lot of good for Syracuse, particularly for young people.

Sims was released and has a court date scheduled for next month. He is a former star player on the Syracuse University men's basketball team, leading them to a national championship game in 1996. He was hired as city parks commissioner by former Mayor Stephanie Miner in 2015.