By Jim Seckler
Mohave Valley Daily News
KINGMAN, Ariz. — One of two Colorado City officials charged with the misuse of public money accepted a plea agreement Friday.
Former Colorado City Fire Chief Jacob Leonard Barlow pleaded guilty to two counts of solicitation of misuse of public money. Under the plea agreement, Barlow will be sentenced to probation for up to three years. If he completes probation, the felony charges revert to misdemeanors.
Barlow also must pay $7,000 to the county attorney’s office and the sheriff’s office for the cost of the investigation. He could also face up to a year in county jail when he is tentatively sentenced March 1.
Deputy Mohave County Attorney James Schoppman said that Barlow his co-defendant, Colorado City Manager David William Darger, deposited $24,000 and $28,000 respectively into an unauthorized account at a St George, Utah, bank. Colorado City is home to the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints church.
Barlow had been charged with 29 counts in one felony case and 20 counts in another case including violating the duties as custodian of public funds and participating in a criminal syndicate.
Darger, a former secretary-treasurer for the Colorado City Fire District, is still charged with 36 felony counts including violating the duties as custodian of public funds and participating in a criminal syndicate.
Those charges allegedly occurred between February 2004 and April 2010.
Plea negotiations are ongoing in Darger’s case, Schoppman said.
Mohave County law enforcement officers raided the Colorado City and Hildale, Utah, fire stations April 6, 2010, as well as Darger and Barlow’s homes.
In the 2011 case, the fire district’s money was allegedly deposited into an unauthorized bank account with some of it misused for personal purchases at restaurants, grocery and department stores.
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