A former office manager for a Vermont municipal utility has been sentenced to 3 ½ years in prison in the state’s largest embezzlement case.
Joyce Bellavance on Tuesday apologized for stealing $1.6 million in customer funds from the Hardwick Electric Department, saying she felt worthless and wanted to buy people’s affections.
The Burlington Free Press reports that three members of the department asked that she be given the maximum sentence.
Bellavance wrote checks to herself to pay credit card bills and for home renovations, vacations, real estate, jewelry and cars.
Bellavance’s lawyer argued for leniency saying Bellavance acted out of depression and childhood abuse and got no happiness from her actions.