Ex-teachers union head seeks new sentence

February 3, 2014

Former Wyoming Area School District teacher union president Lisa Barrett has asked a federal judge to reconsider her 12-month prison sentence, asking for either an undefined “split sentence” — such as a mix of prison and home confinement — or a sentence of 12 months and one day.

The request for an additional day could shorten Barrett’s time in prison. Under federal rules, a person is not eligible for early release for a sentence up to 12 months. Adding a day adds that eligibility.

Barrett pleaded guilty Oct. 2, 2013, to charges she embezzled more than $30,000 in union funds and spent it on herself and family. In seeking a sentence change, she notes she has made full restitution.

In a brief filed Monday, the government opposes reconsideration, arguing the judge made no error in his sentence, that 12 months was in the lower range of 10 to 16 months recommended under federal guidelines, and that while the government had determined Barrett had taken $59,273 over several years, the union reported a loss of $94,125, but limited records meant the union could not confirm the higher amount.