Man sentenced to prison for stealing money from friend

Man sentenced to prison for stealing money from friend


GILLETTE (WNE) — The man who spent $231,255 belonging to the man he considered a grandfather to him was given a four- to eight-year prison sentence Tuesday.

Harvey Bethea, 52, said there wasn’t a day that went by that he didn’t miss the relationship he had with Donny York, for whom he had been trusted to care for his ranch and his estate. Bethea called York a “very dear friend. He’s my family.”

In a written statement, the victim, who is in his 80s, said that the crime affected him emotionally, physically and financially and left him unable to trust anyone as he had before.

He said he had worked hard to build his ranch and business, only to have it stolen from him by someone he trusted.

Bethea had pleaded guilty in August to five counts of exploitation of a vulnerable adult. It was part of a plea agreement in which five other counts were dismissed.

Bethea had been accused of using much of the money in various ways to help his girlfriend and her family to pay for livestock that was never bought, for a down payment on a motorized roping machine, a laptop, medical bills and even a fur coat.

The spending happened between April 2016 and April 2017.


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