Bookstore worker convicted, sentenced to pay back $2,500 |

Bookstore worker convicted, sentenced to pay back $2,500

— A former Off the Beaten Path bookstore employee who pleaded guilty to stealing $2,500 from the store will pay it back in monthly installments.

Shawn Brian Donohoo, 22, was sentenced last week in Routt County Court to 18 months unsupervised probation, 24 hours of community service and $238 in fines and court costs. A one-year jail sentence was suspended, provided that Donohoo meets the terms of his probation.

As part of an agreement that amended the charge from a felony to a misdemeanor, Donohoo was also ordered to pay Off the Beaten Path $100 a month until the $2,500 is paid back.

Bookstore owner Leslie Ryan said she felt badly that she had to press charges against an employee, but she said she had a responsibility to other business owners.

“We wanted the business community to be aware that this kind of theft occurs and the police are there to help,” Ryan said.

Police were called to the store in early March after Ryan noticed a discrepancy of approximately $2,000.

Assistant Chief of Police Art Fiebing said Ryan checked surveillance video tapes and noticed two occasions where Donohoo opened the cash register in the restaurant portion of the store. Ryan told police there were no customers at the register at the time and she said Donohoo was acting suspiciously.

Donohoo had been a clerk at Off the Beaten Path since Jan. 24, and Ryan started noticing cash shortages in the restaurant register on Feb. 18.

According to the arrest warrant, Police Detective Ross Kelly gave Ryan three $100 bills marked with blue dye, which she put in the cash register at the store.

A surveillance tape showed Donohoo opening the register and walking downstairs to a bathroom. When officers met with him, he denied taking the money and consented to a search.

Police didn’t find the money on him, but noticed a small blue mark on his shirt and on one finger. A search of the bathroom revealed $280 inside a roll of toilet paper, including one of the marked $100 bills.

Fiebing said Donohoo admitted to taking money from Off the Beaten Path after he was arrested March 10.

— To reach Michelle Bales call 871-4208 or e-mail

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