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Chickasaw County Courthouse

NEW HAMPTON -- A judge has turned down an Ionia woman’s request for leniency on charges she stole thousands of dollars from the bank where she worked.

Kristen Ann Pitz, 29, sought a deferred judgment, which would have removed the felony conviction for first-degree theft from her record after she completed probation.

Instead, she was given a suspended sentence with two to five years of probation with restitution.

Her attorney pointed out Pitz, who has no other convictions, is a mother of four with her husband, David, in federal prison for using crop proceeds for personal expenses instead of paying a farm credit agency loan. A felony conviction on her record would eliminate her employment opportunities and bar her from positions that involve finance or trust, her attorney argued.

In an order handed down on Dec. 27, Judge Richard Stochl denied the request saying it was inappropriate considering her actions and for what he called her unwillingness to accept full responsibility by blaming her husband for her behavior.

Kristen Pitz had worked at First Citizens Bank in New Hampton when bank officials came up $31,380 short during a surprise cash count in October 2016. She allegedly admitted to taking the money over a six-month period. She was arrested in November 2016 and pleaded in December 2018.

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Police and Courts Reporter

Cops and courts reporter for the Courier

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