7/6/2013 2:09:00 PM Letter: Apology after guilty plea
On this Independence Day, I issue my sincerest apology to my neighbors in the Beaver Creek Village Property Owners Association, (BCVPOA) and to the surrounding Beaver Creek communities for the harm my poor judgment has caused. I am truly sorry for the divisiveness resulting from my actions and hope that we can once again work together as a community and heal the wounds of discord.
Although 100% of the funds which I had taken from the BCVPOA account were used with good intention for these communities, the fact remains that it was wrong to do.
On, July 3, 2013, I entered a plea agreement of guilty to three Open Ended Class 6 Felony Charges that converts to a misdemeanor upon successful completion of the sentencing provisions handed down by the Judge. To clarify, in Arizona, at time of sentencing for a class 6 felony offense, the Judge may deem the offense "Undesignated." This means that the offense has not yet been designated as a felony conviction. In lay terms, the Court agreed that if I do everything I am supposed to do and successfully complete probation, the offense will be designated a misdemeanor thereby avoiding the serious consequences of having a felony conviction. This creates a strong incentive to successfully complete the terms of probation and "earn" a misdemeanor. A class 6 felony is the least serious category of felony in Arizona.
The terms of probation calls for restitution of all funds taken from the property owners association. Of those funds, $20,000 was immediately repaid and received by the Association nearly 6 months ago. Another $13,000 was held in trust by my attorney for the past 4 months which will be released to the BCPOA within the next seven days. From this amount, POA members will be repaid the balance of their contribution to the BCVPOA Bridge fund and inclusive of the $6,000, which I also contributed.
The terms also included probation and community restitution. The Judge specifically indicated that the community restitution be served at a soup kitchen or homeless shelter since it is well-known that previous voluntary services, amounting to a full time job, was centered around community organizing and advocacy efforts. I humbly accepted the terms as I admitted that what I did, borrowing funds from the Property Owners Association without the expressed consent of their board or membership and loaning it to another organization, even under duress, was wrong, regardless of the extenuating circumstances.
The Judge commended the works performed through the years in this community and expressed admiration and hope that I continue to serve with integrity. It is my desire and intent to do so as called upon.