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No jail time for KSU employee who stole money

By Dave O'Brien, staff writer Published: July 3, 2017 3:31 PM
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A former, longtime Kent State University employee who stole more than $1,000 from the university while working in the FLASHcard office in 2015 will not serve any jail time for the crime.

Instead, Annette L. Ladd of Rootstown was sentenced Monday to two years probation by Portage County Common Pleas Judge Becky Doherty.

Ladd, 56, will be on supervised probation during that time, with random drug and alcohol screens and treatment if necessary. Doherty gave her one year to pay $1,375 restitution to the university — which includes $330 in fees on top of the $1,045 she stole, the judge and Assistant Portage County Prosecutor Steve Michniak said.

Ladd also was ordered to pay $223 in court costs within six months, and Doherty suspended any additional fines. She told Ladd she rarely sees anyone at her age without any run-ins with the law "except as a victim."

"It's really sad that this occurred at this point in your life," Doherty told Ladd. "You're retired, you can get your benefits from Kent State and you can move on."

Attorney Matthew Fortado told Doherty his client resigned in January after working at the university for 37 years, and after the allegations that she stole money from the FLASHcard office between October and December 2015.

Ladd currently is waiting for her retirement benefits to be processed, he said.

Once that is done, "she'll be able to pay restitution in full," Fortado said. "She takes full responsibility for that."

Ladd pleaded guilty in March to theft in office, a fourth-degree felony, passing bad checks and tampering with records, both fifth-degree felonies. She faced up to 18 months in prison on the fourth-degree felony and up to 12 months in prison on each of the fifth-degree felonies.

Ladd's lack of a prior criminal record and her cooperation with investigators worked in her favor, Doherty said.

"I take total responsibility for anybody I've hurt and the crime itself," Ladd told the judge. "I'm sorry."

KSU FLASHcards act as student ID, library cards and may also be loaded with "FLASHcash" so students can purchase goods and services on campus and from area businesses. KSU investigators discovered that Ladd tried to pay back the money she took by writing 11 different checks totaling $1,045 to the university, but the checks bounced, according to her indictment.


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