Casper Woman Gets Deferral for Theft From Wrestling Club
The former treasurer of the Casper Wrestling Club was given first-offender treatment Friday in Natrona County District Court after stealing nearly $2,000 from the group.
District Judge Thomas Sullins will allow 54-year-old Wanda Sue Atkinson to serve one to five years of probation and defer further proceedings in the case under Wyoming Statute 7-13-301. Such decisions are commonly referred to as "first-offender treatment."
No conviction of judgment of guilt would be entered in the case should Atkinson successfully complete her probationary term.
Atkinson previously pleaded guilty in the case to a single count of felony theft, which is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $10,000. She was required to pay over $1,700 in restitution, and that payment had been completed before Friday's sentencing hearing.
Casper police began investigating in April after Atkinson was removed from her position as club treasurer and two club representatives went to the police claiming that Atkinson had not allowed anyone else to review the organization's finances.
The investigation revealed that Atkinson had used club money for personal expenses.
Seven people associated the club made victim impact statements Friday morning. They explained that Atkinson's crime had taken a "tremendous toll" on the club, causing mistrust within the group, harming the public perception of the club and causing a decline in membership.
Another person explained that the crime had cost the children participating in the club opportunities and left the club struggling to pay debts and fees.
Atkinson made a tearful, inaudible statement when given the opportunity to speak. She is now an employee of the Natrona County School District.