FARMINGTON — A Dallas Plantation woman was sentenced Friday to 90 days in jail with all of it suspended after she pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of theft.

Gail Gavigan, 62, a former treasurer/secretary of the Rangeley Lakes Snowmobile Club, also repaid $45,000 to the club on Friday.

Gavigan was indicted on a felony charge of theft in July in connection with more than $54,000 unaccounted for in the club’s books over the past three years. Gavigan was charged in October 2008 with stealing more than $10,000 from the club after club officers discovered bookkeeping discrepancies.

Gavigan pleaded to a lesser charge of theft by unauthorized taking or transfer in a plea agreement Friday in Franklin County Superior Court in Farmington.

Assistant District Attorney Andrew Robinson said he met with club officers previously and made it clear prosecutors were prepared to move forward with the felony charges.

“We also made it clear if they wanted to reach an agreement with (Gavigan), then we would respect that,” Robinson said.

Robinson said they reviewed what the club could reasonably expect Gavigan to be able to pay, and $45,000 is what they came up with.

Club President Stephen Dudley was present in court and asked to speak.

The club, by majority vote, feels the amount is fair and reasonable, Dudley said. It also reflects, in part, on “Gail’s previous many years of wonderful service to the club,” Dudley said. “We don’t want that to be forgotten.”

Gavigan’s attorney, Walter Hanstein, said Gavigan cashed out her Maine Department of Transportation pension and borrowed the rest of the money to repay the club.

Hanstein said he had a check from Gavigan to the club for $45,000.

A lot of the funds people thought were misappropriated were actually spent on items for the club, Hanstein said.
“I know she is very, very sorry,” Hanstein said.

Outside the courtroom, Dudley said this incident has been going on for about 15 months and has taken a lot of discussion and time and effort to reach the decision.

“We feel it is in the best interest for the club, a volunteer organization, to have the money in hand,” Dudley said.

[email protected]

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.