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YOUNGSTOWN Judge sentences woman for failing to report to jail



Published: Wed, August 7, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



By BOB JACKSON

VINDICATOR COURTHOUSE REPORTER

YOUNGSTOWN -- A city woman will spend the next month in jail.

Her crime: not reporting to jail when she was supposed to.

Judge Robert Lisotto of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court sentenced Diane Morris to the jail time Tuesday.

Morris, 35, of West Boston Avenue, was placed on five years' probation in September 2001 after pleading guilty to grand theft and unauthorized use of property.

As part of her probation, Morris was ordered to spend two days a week in the county jail for one year, a total of 104 days. The jail time was to coincide with days she was off work, said assistant prosecutor Robert Andrews.

But Morris never showed up at the jail, and as of June she had paid less than $150 toward her court-ordered restitution of $10,000.

She was arrested in June by the Ohio Adult Parole Authority and has been in the county jail since then awaiting a probation violation hearing.

29 days left

Judge Lisotto ordered Morris to begin serving the entire 104-day sentence immediately. But with credit for the time she's already been in jail awaiting the hearing, which is required under Ohio law, Morris has only 29 days left to serve.

Once she gets out of jail in September, Morris must begin making monthly payments of $206 until restitution is complete, the judge said.

Morris did not explain in court why she never showed up at the jail. Her lawyer, Paul Conn, also declined to say why she never reported.

Morris worked for the Compensation Programs of Ohio, which processes disability claims for various companies and organizations, including the Ohio Conference of Plasterers and Cement Masons.

Between January 2000 and January 2001, she processed fraudulent disability claims in her own name from the plasters and masons union account.

Prosecutors said Morris got caught when company officials noticed that the amount paid to her had risen higher than what normally should have been paid to a disability claimant.

bjackson@vindy.com




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