By Brian Schroeder, Morning Meteorologist-reporter - email
The American Township Firefighter Union Treasurer Jason Belton appeared in front of Judge Richard Warren facing charges of grand theft for allegedly stealing money from the union.
Monday, Judge Warren was to decide whether Belton would be sentenced for a fourth degree felony for theft or receive intervention in lieu of conviction. Defense attorney Andrew King argued that a combination of bi-polar, post traumatic stress and impulse control disorders led Belton to steal more that fourteen thousand dollars from a union fund.
Allen County Prosecutor Juergen Waldick argued that Belton did not meet the legal definition of mental illness, and Belton was exaggerating his problems to avoid a stricter sentence. Judge Warren found that mental illness was a factor in Belton's criminal behavior. As part of the intervention in lieu of conviction, Belton is required to appear in Mental Health Court twice a month, and must attend a support meeting once a week.