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Svea woman gets probation for theft of lottery tickets

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WILLMAR — Janice Marie Wadsworth, 60, of Svea, was sentenced Wednesday to 75 days in jail and 10 years of probation on a felony charge of state lottery fraud for stealing thousands of dollars in lottery tickets from her employer.

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As part of her sentence handed down by District Judge David L. Mennis, Wadsworth was also ordered to pay $6,202 in restitution and a $1,000 fine. She also cannot seek employment at any location that sells lottery tickets unless approved by probation officials. As much as 45 days of the jail sentence can be deferred if she complies with the conditions of probation.

As part of the plea agreement reached in August, another felony for theft was dismissed.

Wadsworth received a stay of imposition on her sentence, which means the felony conviction will be reduced to a misdemeanor if she complies with the conditions of her sentence.

The charges were filed after the Kandiyohi County Sheriff’s Office began investigating the theft of lottery tickets at Eagle Lake Country Store in July 2012.

Store officials told investigators that they had instituted a tracking system, including the number of tickets sold and dollar amounts taken in sales, after another case of lottery ticket theft at the store.

An audit of the tracking system showed inconsistencies between ticket sales and dollars on weekdays, which was when Wadsworth worked.

In addition, other employees reported seeing the high-dollar lottery scratch-off tickets, worth $10, $20 or $30, in the trash can after Wadsworth’s shifts at the store.

The audit also showed no inconsistencies after Wadsworth was notified that there would be an audit of the lottery ticket sales.

In September 2012, store officials presented investigators with a final summary from March to August, showing that $29,424.50 in lottery tickets had been stolen.

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Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

(320) 214-4373
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