Former city events coordinator sentenced

Stock photo | St. George News

CEDAR CITY – A 5th District Judge sentenced a former Cedar City employee for two class A misdemeanors Wednesday after agreeing to reduce a second-degree felony charge.

Judge John Walton sentenced Byron Linford to attempted misuse of public money and attempted forgery, both class A misdemeanors, and sentenced him to two jail sentences of 364 days. The judge stayed the execution of that sentence and instead ordered Linford to spend 30 days in jail and 18 months on bench probation.

Linford, 50, was also ordered to pay a restitution of $28,970.65 to Cedar City that was paid before sentencing per the terms of the plea agreement.

The defendant was originally charged with a second-degree felony for misuse of public monies after his former employer, Cedar City, alleged he had used city funds for personal reasons. The state agreed to reduce the felony charge to two misdemeanors if he paid the restitution prior to today’s sentencing.

The former Cedar City events coordinator is also required to write a letter of apology to his previous employer.

Cedar City Mayor Maile Wilson, who issued a prepared statement on behalf of the city, said she was glad to have the case resolved. She also expressed gratitude to those who helped in the recovery of the public funds.

Following Wednesday’s court hearing, Linford’s attorney Jack Burns, said his client was glad to finally have the issue put behind him.

“We’re just happy that it’s over and my client can move on with his life,” Burns said.

Linford resigned from Cedar City in 2015 amid questions surrounding his spending habits while traveling as a city employee. The Cedar City Police Department turned the case over to the St. George Police Department for investigation because of a conflict of interest.

The police investigation revealed several questionable charges Linford made between Jan. 1, 2014, and Jan. 2, 2015, including $5,000 in airline tickets and hotel rooms via a city-issued credit card. The card had been provided to Linford by the city for expenses while traveling to recruit event organizers to Cedar City.

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