The former treasurer of a school band booster group pleaded guilty Tuesday to stealing more than $19,000 from the group.
Kori Sue Plotner, 39, of Morrisdale, received a short jail sentence and a year’s probation.
Plotner was accused of taking the money between Sept. 2014 and Oct. 2015 while she was the treasurer of the West Branch Band Boosters Club.
Prior to sentencing in Clearfield County court, defense attorney John Sughrue noted that she had paid the $19,108 of restitution in full. He stated she has no prior record and her behavior in this case is “just unexplainable”. Even though it was an open plea, he said he expected her to receive a probation only sentence.
When President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman questioned this, District Attorney Bill Shaw stated that as part of the plea agreement, the charge was dropped down to a misdemeanor. Plotner had been charged with felony theft by unlawful taking and receiving stolen property.
Ammerman sentenced her to serve 60 days to one year in jail and one year consecutive probation for theft. He added that he imposed the 60-day sentence because of the nature of the crime.
When a representative from the club addressed the court, Ammerman asked her if any activities had to be cut due to the theft. The representative replied that a trip to Disney World last semester had to be canceled. They plan to make the trip this school year, she said due to “the kindness of the community” and money received through the school’s insurance policy, but students will still be paying for a portion of the trip themselves.
According to the affidavit of probable cause, the group started to be suspicious of Plotner in October 2015. At a meeting that month, Plotner gave three different balance totals for the checking account. Later the officers discovered the account had a balance of only $3,266.86. They had expected the account to have close to $20,000 in it.