Tuesday, December 4, 2012
District Attorney John Sewell has charged Jennifer Bailey, 41, of Hood River, with two felonies tied to her alleged embezzlement of $21,451.92 in cash from the Hood River County Little League.
One felony charge, aggravated theft in the first degree — a B-Class felony — was listed as part of her original arrest executed Nov. 20 by City of Hood River Police.
Sewell elevated the second original charge of forgery in the second degree, a misdemeanor, to one count of identity theft in the first degree — a C-Class felony. According to the D.A.’s charges, Bailey allegedly embezzled the funds through her role as HRCLL board member and treasurer.
“My priority in prosecuting this case is to ensure that the Hood River Little League program be made whole,” said Sewell when asked about the case.
Bailey was arrested and lodged at NORCOR on Nov. 20 and posted $2,500 in bail on a $25,000 bond shortly after her arrival. Brian Starns was already engaged as her attorney at the time of her arrest.
In addition to the D.A.’s filed charges, Monday’s hearing included two requests from Bailey’s attorney to Judge John A. Olson, asking for modification of her conditions of release.
Starns first asked that Bailey be allowed to travel regularly to the state of Washington to access a support group. Olson agreed to this modification.
Starns also asked that Olson loosen the restrictions placed on Bailey from her original condition of release, which prohibited her from any contact or interaction with individuals associated with the HRLL case.
Starns argued that the restriction was too broad and that living in a small town would necessarily place Bailey in contact with others associated with the case. He cited Bailey’s children’s continuing participation in sporting events that she would like to attend, and the fact that some individuals associated with HRCLL had attempted to contact Bailey themselves.
Sewell responded to the request by offering Olson a list of specified individuals including board members, officers or administrators of HRCLL and others who have participated in the investigation, and requested that these individuals be specifically protected from contact with Bailey.
Starns argued that Bailey identified one person on the list as one of her best friends and another as someone who had “reached out” to Bailey.
Sewell responded that Bailey should be directed to respond to any of the listed individuals by saying she was “not allowed to discuss the case” while the case was still pending. Sewell did allow that attendance at sporting or social events, with these restrictions in place, would not be a violation of State conditions.
Olson agreed with the modification allowing Bailey to attend sporting and social events but included the individual no-contact list as part of the modification.
According to Sewell, Bailey’s case will advance to a grand jury hearing where additional charges may be filed. Bailey remains free on bail and her next hearing is slated for Jan. 14 at 9:30 a.m.
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Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive
The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge