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Court theft saga ends as Donna Sheriff gets two years
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The final chapter on the theft of thousands of dollars from the Dawson County Clerk of Courts office ended last week with the sentencing of the final defendant.

Last Tuesday, Donna Jeanette Sheriff, former deputy clerk of courts, was sentenced to two years in state prison and eight years on probation by Superior Court Judge Kathlene Gosselin.

Sheriff, 44, pleaded guilty to felony theft by taking and violating her oath of office back in June 2010, but sentencing was delayed while former Clerk of Courts Becky McCord was on trial, even though the two crimes were unrelated.

Local law enforcement discovered that while Sheriff served as deputy clerk, she had written more than $80,000 in unauthorized checks from a clerk of courts account to contract worker Justin Disharoon.

Sheriff and Disharoon were arrested in January 2010.

Last month, Disharoon was sentenced to two years in state prison. He also must pay $5,000 to the county.

Following the arrest of Sheriff and Disharoon, authorities began investigating McCord, who later resigned from the office shed held for 17 years.

In August, McCord pleaded guilty to stealing more than $140,000 from the clerks office.

She is serving two years in federal prison for tax evasion and bankruptcy charges.

McCord also was convicted on counts of theft by taking and violation of oath of office and will transfer to a state prison to serve two additional years following her federal incarceration.

As part of her sentencing, Sheriff must undergo drug and alcohol evaluation, waive her 4th Amendment rights and pay $5,000 in restitution to Dawson County.

Sheriff was taken into custody immediately following last Tuesdays sentencing.