Former Erie City Council President Sonya Arrington has been sentenced for fraud.
Arrington will serve time in federal prison for embezzling money from her non-profit.
She could have received a sentence of two to three years in prison. Instead she will serve one year and one day in federal prison.
Arrington pleaded guilty to fraud back in February of 2021, admitting to embezzling $70,000 from her non-profit Mothers Against Teen Violence.
Arrington’s Defense Attorney, Leonard Ambrose, argued that the defendant be put on house arrest or given probation.
“Sonya was realistic. I mean we’ve been realistic throughout the entire case. Obviously that would have been what we wanted, but we got a lot less than the government wanted so we feel pretty good about it,” said Leonard Ambrose, Sonya Arrington’s Lawyer.
Attorney Ambrose called eight witnesses to testify. Those witnesses included family and members of the community who worked closely with Arrington.
Ambrose believes that this had an affect on the sentencing.
“Undercut governments theme that this was some type of scam of operation that was created to simply to take in money. It was created after the murder of her son and I think that’s significant and it came through,” said Ambrose.
“The real victims of this crime are those who are involved in charitable acts. When people hear about this, their willingness to contribute to charities could be swayed by the idea their money may not end up in the right hands,” said Federal Judge David Cercone.
Judge Cercone stated that he gives Arrington credit for some of the good things she has done.
However, Judge Cercone also said that he could not impose a sentencing of house arrest or probation as that sends the wrong deterrent message.
Prosecuter Christian Trabold agreed with this.
“Arrington used money from her non-profit for her own personal use. She went to the casino more than 113 times, taking money from the Mothers Against Teen Violence card each time,” said Christian Trabold, Prosecutor.
Arrington will report to federal prison in the next 45 days to serve her sentence. She is also required to pay restitution.