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Probation sentence for school food provider

Thursday, July 18, 2013 1:38 PM
Last updated Friday, July 19, 2013 5:26 PM
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The owner of an Augusta produce company pleaded guilty Thursday to six misdemeanor counts of theft by receiving stolen property.

Leo Charette pleaded guilty Thursday to six misdemeanor counts of theft by receiving stolen property.  MICHAEL HOLAHAN/FILE
MICHAEL HOLAHAN/FILE
Leo Charette pleaded guilty Thursday to six misdemeanor counts of theft by receiving stolen property.


Leo P. Charette, 48, was initially indicted on felony charges related to the discovery of six stolen items in his 15th Street warehouse in December 2010. However, Assistant District Attorney Adam Land recommended the reduction in charges because there was no evidence Charette was involved in the theft of the items, the value of the items had been overestimated and Charette had no criminal history.

The Jenkins County Sheriff’s Department alerted local investigators that items stolen in their county were being taken to the Leo’s Produce warehouse. Officers staked out the business and saw two men deliver a stolen golf cart, Land said.

The warehouse contained thousands of items that Charette had bought at flea markets and from individuals. The stolen items identified were the golf cart, a GMC Sierra truck, a Polaris trailer, Jet Ski, ATV and a John Deere mower, according to the indictment.

Defense attorney Peter Johnson said Charette got into trouble because he expected other people to be as honest as he is in business. Johnson described Charette as an entrepreneur who buys and trades items.

Friends spoke on Charette’s behalf, describing him as a man of good character. Leo’s Produce had been a preferred vendor for the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office until his arrest. He continues to be a vendor for the Richmond County Board of Education. In 2011, the school system paid Leo’s Produce $495,206, according to state records.

Richmond County Superior Court Judge J. Wade Padgett accepted the plea negotiation and sentenced Charette to three years probation under the First Offender Act, and imposed a $6,000 fine.

He cautioned Charette that reputations are generally earned and although he had a good reputation in the community, people who steal learn who has a reputation for buying stolen property, too.

Three other men were named in the same indictment as Charette. Larry Germany, 48, was sentenced June 13 to 10 years probation under the First Offender Act. Charges against Bradley C. Rollins, 51, and Derrick A. Williams, 37, are pending. Williams was transferred from a state prison last week to the Richmond County jail. He served time for a September 2012 theft in Jenkins County.

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soapy_725
44097
Points
soapy_725 07/18/13 - 03:19 pm
1
0
"He's a good hearted person, In love with MONEY......"
Unpublished

"He's a good hearted person, In love with MONEY......"

nocnoc
49121
Points
nocnoc 07/18/13 - 04:06 pm
5
3
Is anyone buying this story?

Something stinks at the court house?

"The warehouse contained thousands of items that Charette had bought at flea markets and from individuals."

The stolen items identified were the golf cart, a GMC Sierra truck, a Polaris trailer, Jet Ski, ATV and a John Deere mower, according to the indictment.

"Defense attorney Peter Johnson described Charette as an entrepreneur who buys and trades items."

Entrepreneur
Isn't that a PC/lawyer way of saying "A Stolen Goods Fence"?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fence_%28criminal%29

So how did the thieves in Jenkins Co. know he was a Fence here in Augusta?

palmetto1008
9782
Points
palmetto1008 07/18/13 - 07:00 pm
3
9
Hello, nocnoc. Can you PROVE
Unpublished

Hello, nocnoc. Can you PROVE Charette knew the items were stolen?
Just as much as I can PROVE that George Zimmerman racially profiled, stalked, and deserved to have his head bashed into the sidewalk (if, in fact, the bashing occurred...dead boys don't talk).

corgimom
38252
Points
corgimom 07/18/13 - 07:34 pm
2
5
I think he had an idea, but

I think he had an idea, but just didn't ask too many questions and didn't look too hard. I'm sure there was phony bill of sales.

gargoyle
20595
Points
gargoyle 07/18/13 - 09:48 pm
4
0
A smell from the court house

A smell from the court house is a understatement. The DA office took a while going to the Grand Jury .

soapy_725
44097
Points
soapy_725 07/19/13 - 07:04 am
0
0
Equal justice under the law. LOL LOL LOL
Unpublished

Equal justice under the law. LOL LOL LOL

validPoint
982
Points
validPoint 07/19/13 - 08:47 am
2
0
Things Do Happen

It is true that bad things happen to good people, and that good manners can be corrupted by associates. However, this does seem somewhat of a "fence' operation. Then again, things are not always as they seem. The bottom line is, may the truth, the real truth, and not warp minded judgment prevail and true justice be served.

CricketSeranade
593
Points
CricketSeranade 07/19/13 - 12:50 pm
1
0
Suspicious if you ask me

Did he not think it strange when he wasn't given a title to the truck? What was he doing, practicing don't ask, don't tell?

rmwhitley
5547
Points
rmwhitley 07/19/13 - 05:30 pm
0
0
Hmmmmmm.
Unpublished

I don't buy it. Slaps on the wrist have proven not to be effective. Just look at all of the college and pro "athletes" on probation.

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