FLIPPIN, Ark. -- A former police chief in northern Arkansas who was accused of using a city credit card to steal public funds has been sentenced to 20 years of probation after taking a plea deal.
The felony theft charge carried a maximum sentence of 20 years in jail.
The Baxter Bulletin reports Marion County Circuit Court Judge John Putman ordered ex-Flippin Police Chief Ronald "Dusty" Smith to pay the city $72,118 in restitution.
Putman told the attorneys that the deal is unusual because many people would expect a police officer who stole money and jeopardized cases to get jail time.
An affidavit filed in the case shows Smith allegedly spent around $63,718.84 on a city credit card. The document noted Smith had access to government funds through police, city and drug-buy accounts.
Information from: The Baxter Bulletin, http://www.baxterbulletin.com