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attended the verdict announcement, declined comment after the verdict, saying his office is prosecuting Stickler in another case where he's charged with failing to send to the Internal Revenue Service the taxes that he withheld from his employees' paychecks. District Judge Miranda Reebok Light Pink Trainers
Du to place Stickler in custody, arguing that his conviction coupled with his tax case make him a flight risk. Gorman argued that Stickler has family Reebok Kids Shoes
Stickler guilty of stealing grant funds
in Northern Nevada and is indigent, making him unlikely to flee.Du agreed and allowed him to remain free on his own recognizance.The Reno Gazette Journal first wrote about Stickler in 2011 after hearing reports from churches that he took their money for his Help Build Hope Haiti project, but no homes were built. The RGJ then investigated problems with his federal grant, and one year after that story was published, he was indicted on the charge of stealing grant funds.Earlier in the day, lawyers on both sides made their final arguments to the five woman, seven man jury. Department of Health and Human Services in 2007 and under the terms of the grant, $200,000 had to be dispersed to smaller organizations. Instead, Stickler spent the money, Higginbotham said.Besides overpaying himself and taking his family on a Hawaiian vacation, "there was $244,000 on 'other costs' 1 800 Flowers, Babies R Us, Reno Cleaners, dry cleaners and Starbucks there was nothing in the budget for lattes," Higginbotham said, reading from a list that was created from the receipts he turned in to justify grant spending.But Gorman said the company's bookkeeper and grant manager, Katie Petri, controlled the funds and took the money, not Stickler."She stole and she lied and she walked out of this mess unscathed," Gorman said, adding Petri was given immunity for her testimony.Contrast that with Stickler, Gorman said. When federal agents came to his house to ask questions about the grant, he spoke with them for more than three hours and then left a message on Petri's phone telling her that she should call a lawyer, Gorman said. Petri was a family friend and he wanted to protect her, Gorman said."She is out there, and he's in here," Gorman said. "These are not the actions of a man with a guilty conscience."As Gorman spoke, Stickler reached for a tissue from a box on the defense table and wiped his eyes.Higginbotham told the jury to use common sense while considering whether it was Stickler or Petri who took the money."Ask yourself, whose story has remained the same, whose story has been corroborated by the testimony of other witness, and you'll find that Katie Petri was the Saucony Shadow 6000 Womens one who had the consistent statement," she said. "It was Mike Stickler who would benefit, not Katie Petri."Stickler claimed that he and his wife were busy and didn't pay attention to the company's finances, Higginbotham said. But he owned the company, was the managing partner and signed the grant application, she said."The defendant wants you to believe that he didn't know what was going on in his family run business," she said. "'I didn't know' that's what he wants you to believe. Ask yourself, does that make sense? This isn't Microsoft or Google. Does it make sense that the managing partner of that company didn't know what was going on with the finances?"Higginbotham said the proof goes beyond Petri's testimony. It is revealed by the bank statements, she said.For example, $12,000 was drawn from the grant and placed into the company's account designated for grant use, she said. On the same day, $12,000 was deposited into Stickler's personal account, she said, reading from a list of similar transactions."If you accept that he didn't know, you'd have to accept these are a series of amazing coincidences," Higginbotham said. Attorney Ron Rachow said.Gorman said Petri was Kim Stickler's best friend and someone they knew from church, and "they believed she was truthful," Gorman said."Mike and Kim did not check on the grant funds because they trusted Ms. Petri," she said.But according to a health and human services agent, Petri had lied on her tax returns in 2007 and 2008 by claiming that she earned less than was placed in her account. Petri also withdrew funds and redeposited a portion, but she skimmed off up to $1,000 for herself, Gorman said."That made it impossible to trace, to detect," Gorman said. "The explanation Ms. Petri gave for this crazy maze is Mike Stickler directed it. The maze she created was one of the ways Ms. Petri tried to cover up her theft."
After deliberating for two hours on Monday, a jury rejected claims by Reno businessman Mike Stickler that his bookkeeper stole his company's federal grant funds, and found him guilty of embezzling a portion of his faith based initiative grant. Attorney Dan Bogden, who Reebok Blacktop Alternative
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