Former Penns Valley athletic director Donald Hosterman was sentenced to a period of intermediate restrictive punishment for two years Friday at the Centre County Courthouse.
Judge Pamela A. Ruest sentenced Hosterman, 68, to serve 90 days under house arrest, with the remainder served as probation. He also was ordered to pay a $750 fine and remaining restitution to the Penns Valley Area High School, an amount of about $200, according to Assistant District Attorney Nathan Boob.
Hosterman, of Millheim, was charged with stealing money from high school sporting events and thousands of dollars from the Mountain League athletics conference.
He initially was charged in March with stealing about $400 from school athletic events between Jan. 16 and Feb. 4. Further investigation after complaints from the league showed he had written checks to himself from 2010 to 2013 totaling almost $23,000, leading to additional charges in May.
Hosterman’s defense lawyer, James Bryant, argued for a sentence of probation, indicating that others in similar positions who have provided restitution have been sentenced similarly.
“Like the good dog and the bad dog in the movie ‘Up,’ Hosterman will be wearing the cone of shame for the rest of his life,” Bryant said, indicating that Hosterman has no plans to leave Penns Valley.
Hosterman said he “knows he made a big mistake” and is sorry.
Boob argued for an aggravated sentence and recommended incarceration, saying Hosterman stole from the children of Penns Valley.
For 26 years, Hosterman was trusted by administrators, teachers and students, he said. He was supposed to be an honest role model and an example for others to look up to, but violated others’ trust again and again.
Boob said that the total amount stolen was not a trivial amount and could have been used on textbooks and better facilities for the schools instead of Hosterman’s personal use.
Grange Fair committee member LeDon Young spoke on behalf of the prosecutors, saying Hosterman operated with “malice aforethought” and his actions could have serious effects beyond the schools to events like the Grange Fair, where Hosterman was treasurer and horse committee chairman.
Ruest said she followed sentencing guidelines, “not in the mitigated range requested by the defense and not in the aggravated range requested by the district attorney.
“The defendant has been cooperative and remorseful,” she said.
Hosterman will lose his pension and the ability to serve as the financial officer for any organization, but retains the right to attend Penns Valley athletic matches.