Embezzler gets 10 days
The 56-year-old Tuck pleaded guilty Wednesday in Yamhill County Circuit Court to one count of first-degree theft, a Class C felony.
A plea agreement negotiated by Deputy District Attorney Ladd Wiles and Tuck’s court-appointed attorney, Greg Perez-Selsky of McMinnville, calls for her to serve 10 days in the Yamhill County Jail and serve 24 months on probation afterward. With credit for time served, she has completed the jail term.
She was also fined $200 and ordered to pay her attorney fee of $550. However, if she successfully completes her probation, and she repays the money she embezzled, the fine and attorney fee will be waived.
Tuck failed to appear for her initial arraignment on the charge. She later failed to appear for a trial report conference.
Failure to appear is a crime in itself, but Wiles said his office did not plan to prosecute her on that charge.
Tuck was active on the festival committee for a number of years, and has relatives with a long record of involvement. The one-day event in the West Valley is packed with activities and wraps up with a parade and fireworks show.
When Robert Hollinger took over as chair in January 2012, he discovered discrepancies in a festival account maintained with Bank of America.
Sheriff’s Office Capt. Tim Svenson said investigation focused on bank statements from Dec. 27, 2011, Feb. 3, 2012, March 6, 2012 and May 1, 2012. He said it showed she used routing numbers from the festival account to pay her Sprint cell phone bill those months.
“When she was first confronted about this, she denied involvement,” Wiles said. “The investigation went into a second interview and she acknowledged the evidence was undeniable.”
Tuck said she was deeply sorry.
“I should have done it a different way,” she told the court. “I regret everything I have done.”