CAMDEN, Maine — The former manager of a Camden lodge was sentenced Wednesday to 21 days in jail for stealing $83,000 from the business’ owners.
Kelly J. Hill, 39, pleaded no contest to felony theft during a hearing in Knox County Unified Court. Justice Williams Stokes accepted a sentence agreement reached between the district attorney’s office and defense, which imposed a two-year jail term with all but 21 days suspended. Hill will be placed on probation for three years after she is released from jail.
Assistant District Attorney Jeffrey Baroody said the sentence agreement was negotiated because he knew the defense was going to argue that some of the purchases Hill made with a business debit card were authorized. The owners, however, said the purchases were not authorized.
Baroody said an audit done by the owners of the Lodge At Camden Hills found that Hill had made unauthorized expenditures of $83,000 from 2012 through 2015. An affidavit filed by Camden police at the time of Hill’s arrest last year reported she spent the money on plane trips, stays at other hotels, veterinarian visits for her two dogs and several large purchases at Wal-Mart.
Hill had been manager of the Lodge at Camden Hills since April 2012. Owner James Burgess told police he had put 100 percent trust in Hill to manage the lodge, which is located on Route 1.
Then the owners told police they became suspicious of purchases made by Hill in late 2014. Burgess said Hill became defensive when he said he was going to become more involved in the operation of the lodge.
Hill lived rent- and utility-free in an apartment at the lodge and was given a company car she could use for personal activities.
Defense attorney William Pagnano said Hill had been told she could use the debit card in lieu of salaries during the slow times for the inn.
Stokes also ordered Hill to repay the business owners $45,469 at a rate of $200 per month. Baroody said the inn’s insurance company has provided some compensation to the owners.