Plea agreements reached
Published 6:52 am Monday, March 3, 2014
JACKSON – Two Northampton County natives, one a former municipal official, both avoided time behind bars, but face payment restitution and probation after accepting plea agreements here earlier this week in unrelated embezzlement cases.
Virginia Gail Crowder Colson of Conway and Janet Storey Martin Foot, now residing in Plymouth, were each placed on supervised probation after their respective prison sentences were suspended by Judge J. Carlton Cole, who presided over a term of Northampton County Superior Court.
Colson pled guilty to three counts of felony embezzlement by a local official/employee. The former Town Clerk in Woodland was originally charged, following an investigation by the North Carolina SBI, with 29 counts of embezzlement by a public officer/trustee upon her arrest in May of 2011. The total amount embezzled was in the $8,000 range, according to the Northampton County Clerk of Court’s office.
In accepting the plea, Colson was sentenced by Judge Cole to a minimum of 13 months / maximum of 16 months in prison. That jail time was suspended in lieu of 12 months of supervised probation, and payment of $371.50 in restitution plus court costs.
Judge Cole also ordered that Colson cannot hold any fiduciary position, paid or unpaid, for a period of five years.
Foot was formerly employed by an insurance firm in Conway from where she stole money during a period from June 4-27, 2005 and later charged with 17 counts of embezzlement. In the arrangement between her lawyer and the District Attorney, Foot entered a guilty plea on four counts and was sentenced by Judge Cole to a prison term of six months minimum / eight months maximum. That was suspended in exchange for 60 months of probation, payment of court costs, and restitution to her former employer in the amount of $29,403.52 ($15,000 of which was ordered to be paid within 90 days).
Judge Cole also ordered Foot to perform 120 hours of community service within a six-month period; submit to warrantless searches and breathalyzer tests; and not to hold any fiduciary position, paid or unpaid, for a period of five years.