Crime

Ex-Ada County treasurer sentenced to probation, no jail for misuse of public money

Top five criminal offenses in Ada County

Top five offenses in Ada County were determined from the Idaho State Police's Uniform Crime Reporting data.
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Top five offenses in Ada County were determined from the Idaho State Police's Uniform Crime Reporting data.

The former Ada County treasurer accused of misusing public funds pleaded guilty to an amended charge of misdemeanor misuse of public money by a public official on Wednesday.

Vicky McIntyre was initially charged with seven felonies for misusing public funds in 2016 while serving as the elected treasurer, but four of the charges were dismissed by a judge due to a finding of lack of probable cause. The county commissioners suspended McIntyre after she was charged.

Ada County Magistrate Judge Thomas Watkins accepted McIntyre’s guilty plea on Wednesday and sentenced her to six months of unsupervised probation, issued a $500 fine and granted her a withheld judgment. If McIntyre successfully completes her probation, she could go back before the court and request that the charge be dismissed from her record.

Per the plea agreement, the prosecution did not argue against or in favor of the withheld judgment, and recommended the six months of unsupervised probation.

Former Ada County Commissioner Sharon Ullman, who was unseated in 2018 by Democrat Kendra Kenyon, stood up in court after the prosecutor spoke, defending McInytre. Judge Watkins did not silence Ullman, despite the interruption of the hearing, and allowed her to speak.

“I hate to see her have any kind of criminal record when she maybe had a momentary lapse in judgment,” Ullman said in court.

UIlman went on to allege that other county commissioners — she indirectly referenced former commissioners Dave Case and Jim Tibbs — have used county credit cards to buy meals for meetings, something she deemed a questionable use of county money.

“I have known very few elected officials as honorable and as ethical as Vicky McIntyre in all my years of involvement,” Ullman told the court. “I would ask that you dismiss the charges all together.”

McIntyre, a former Republican candidate for Idaho state treasurer, charged almost $500 in personal expenses to her county-issued credit card since January 2016. The accusations she faced included using the credit card to purchase hockey tickets and passes to the High Roller Ferris Wheel in Las Vegas while at a conference, among other personal expenses.

She repaid the county as soon as questions were raised about the spending, according to defense attorney Matthew Gunn. He also noted that the complaint against McIntyre was filed by a former commissioner just before the election, suggesting that there might have been a political motive.

Records show that Case filed the public official corruption complaint about McIntyre in April 2018.

McIntyre was never booked into jail.

Watkins told McIntyre before announcing his sentence that given her history with public service and the fact that she repaid the county, “I’m hoping this was nothing more than an oversight or an accident.”

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Reporter Ruth Brown covers the criminal justice and correctional systems in Idaho. She focuses on breaking news, public safety and social justice. Prior to coming to the Idaho Statesman, she was a reporter at the Idaho Press-Tribune, the Bakersfield Californian and the Idaho Falls Post Register.
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