Former juvenile probation employee sentenced to jail time, probation

Crime Watch

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Shalee Sibbett Claiborne| Bonneville County Jail

IDAHO FALLS — A former Bonneville County employee has been sentenced for felony misuse of public funds after making personal purchases using a county issued credit card.

Shalee Sibbett Claiborne appeared in court Wednesday, and was sentenced to five years in prison. However, District Judge Bruce Pickett suspended that sentence and she was released.

Pickett did sentence Claiborne to 180 days in county jail, which will begin this week. Two of those days were credited from her arrest. She also received 180 days of jail time at the discretion of her probation officer, 100 hours of community service, and must pay 1,805.50 in fees, according to court documents.

Claiborne was originally charged with two counts of felony grand theft and a count of felony misuse of funds. However, as part of a plea agreement, those charges were amended to one felony count of misuse of public funds by a public officer or employee.

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Her illegal spending was discovered in August 2017 by a coworker “who had concerns because there was a lot of expenses that where unaccounted for,” according to court documents. Claiborne was the community service coordinator with Bonneville County Juvenile Probation. She worked as a contractor and then a full-time employee with the department for over 10 years.

The coworker became suspicious following several incidents where Claiborne did not turn in receipts for purchases made on her county issued credit card. Instead, Claiborne accused her coworker of losing the receipts.

According to court documents, Claiborne purchased over nine gallons of gasoline at the Maverick in Soda Springs in June 2017 totaling $25. When questioned by coworkers, she said she purchased a Barnes and Noble “Hello Kitty” gift card worth $40 but was able to buy it on sale for $25.

In another incident, Claiborne’s coworkers received a billing statement that showed a $150 charge to Dixon Horseshoe Design. Claiborne did not turn in a receipt for this purchase, according to court documents, and when she was asked to provide proof of purchase, she emailed a receipt with a hand written note describing the purchase.

According to court documents, Claiborne made a handful of additional purchases on the county issued credit card.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this article misstated the sentence given to Claiborne. We included the discretionary time, but neglected to include actual jail time given by Judge Pickett. In reality, Claiborne received 180 days in jail, plus 180 days of discretionary time. apologizes for the error.