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Published: Saturday, 7/29/2006

Ex-Legion officer avoids time in jail by repaying post

Post 441 member Tom German, left, speaks to the court before the sentencing of Roger Glasgow, who stole post funds. Post 441 member Tom German, left, speaks to the court before the sentencing of Roger Glasgow, who stole post funds.

BOWLING GREEN A Wes-ton, Ohio, man who admitted stealing $35,000 from the Tontogany American Legion Post repaid the money yesterday as part of a plea agreement that will keep him out of jail.

Roger Glasgow, 46, pleaded no contest and was found guilty of theft, a first-degree misdemeanor, in Bowling Green Municipal Court by Judge Mark Reddin.

The judge imposed a $500 fine and two years community control, ordered Mr. Glasgow to serve 90 days on electronic home monitoring when he is not at work, and told him to have no contact with the Legion post 'unless they're interested in having contact with you.'

Mr. Glasgow could have been sentenced to up to six months in jail and fined up to $1,000.

Heather Baker, an assistant Wood County prosecutor, said she recommended probation and full restitution at the post's request.

Mr. Glasgow, a former commander and finance officer of the post, didn't address Legion members in the courtroom but gave them a letter of apology.

His attorney, Albert Potter II, told the court that Mr. Glasgow's diabetes became so severe last summer, he couldn't work and lost his job as a truck driver. 'He was taking money [from the Legion post] not to use for illegal purposes, but for his family to survive,' he said.

Mr. Glasgow now works as an over-the-road truck driver, and he and his wife have taken out a second mortgage on their home to repay the Legion, his attorney said.

Before sentencing, Tom German, a trustee of Post 441, thanked the prosecutor's office and Mr. Potter for helping the 150-member organization get its money back, but his words were more stern for Mr. Glasgow.

'You not only stole our money, you stole our friendship and our trust, and that's something you can never give back to us,' Mr. German said. 'I'm sorry to say it happened because you were a good member, a motivator.'

Judge Reddin said losing the friendship and trust of his fellow Legionnaires was perhaps the most severe penalty Mr. Glasgow would receive.

'You only have yourself to blame for that, and you know it,' Judge Reddin said.

Members of the post said afterward that the theft drained the organization's treasury.

'We had nothing left in our account,' Post 441 Commander Dick Conrad said. 'We had to borrow money from our members to pay the bills.'

Mr. German said nearly every member had been in Mr. Glasgow's shoes at one time: laid off or in need of money.

'He could've asked for help, and we would've gladly helped him,' Mr. Conrad said.

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