Sentence upheld in tornado fund embezzlement case

CNJ staff

District Judge Teddy Hartley upheld his 10-year prison sentence Wednesday of a woman who stole money from a tornado relief fund.

Originally sentenced May 31 in Hartley’s court, Lori Howard had filed a motion asking him to reconsider.

District Attorney Matt Chandler said Howard’s attorney asked Hartley to consider probation in lieu of prison during a Wednesday morning hearing.

“They filed a motion to reduce the sentence; we opposed the motion and the judge ordered that the sentence will remain the same,” Chandler said.

Howard pleaded guilty to 72 counts of embezzlement and fraud faced a maximum sentence of 135 years in prison for stealing $145,000 while working with Eastern Plains Council of Governments.