Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Trial set in check-theft case

Hailey man charged with 4 felonies


By TERRY SMITH
Express Staff Writer

Seth I. Allen

A March 2 jury trial has been scheduled for a 19-year-old Hailey man accused of forging and cashing checks stolen from the Wood River Fiber Arts Guild.

Seth I. Allen was arraigned Monday in Blaine County 5th District Court on four felony charges—two counts of grand theft and two counts of forgery. Judge Robert J. Elgee advised Allen that the crimes are punishable by up to 14 years in prison each.

Allen pleaded not guilty. He is currently free on $5,000 bond and is represented by Hailey attorney Cheri Hicks under her public defender contract with Blaine County.

According to court records, Allen was arrested by Hailey police on Sept. 15. A probable cause affidavit filed by Hailey officer Garth Davis alleges that Allen stole the checks from his mother, a member of the guild.

Allen allegedly wrote two checks to himself, one for $200 and one for $800, and cashed them in July at Bank of America in Hailey.

According to Davis, the guild became aware of the missing checks and funds when Allen allegedly attempted to cash a third check for $675 at the bank later in July. That check wouldn't clear and the bank notified the guild that the account was nearly overdrawn.

Davis wrote that Hailey police were notified and subsequent investigation led to Allen as the alleged culprit.

Terry Smith: tsmith@mtexpress.com




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