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Man sentenced in Franklin County Court

March 21, 2001

Man sentenced in Franklin County Court



CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - A Chambersburg man who smuggled stolen checks into the Franklin County Prison and attempted to have them deposited while serving an earlier sentence was sentenced to another three to 12 months in the county jail Wednesday.

Donald Bartel Butler, 42, of 121 S. Second St., Apt. 3, pleaded guilty to receiving stolen property.

His attorney, Public Defender Robert Trambley, asked Franklin County Court of Common Pleas Judge John Walker to consider a probation sentence because the incident happened more than a year ago and Butler has since held a steady job at Nitterhouse in Chambersburg.

"I can't ignore the fact this incident occurred while you were in jail," Walker said.

According to the affidavit of probable cause, Butler received the stolen blank checks from a fellow inmate while in a Montgomery County, Md., jail and smuggled them into the Franklin County Prison when he began a sentence there in 1999.

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While in jail, he sent the blank checks to a friend to deliver to another friend to pass and deposit for him.

Prison officials discovered the plot when the envelope with the checks was returned to the prison in December 1999 because it had an incorrect mailing address.

Upon inspection, a deputy warden found 10 blank personal checks in the envelope.

"Donald Butler has not been a model citizen," Walker said, pointing to Butler's past forgery convictions. "If this was his first offense I would give him probation. Unfortunately, he has a record and a record follows."

Walker ordered Butler to make restitution as determined by the Probation Department and made him eligible for work release.

Stacey Danzuso

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