The Ashburn man who pleaded guilty to embezzling funds from a local Little League softball team will not serve any jail time, but will undergo two years of supervised probation.
During a sentencing hearing, Monday, June 25, Reginald Earl Drew was sentenced to two years in prison by Judge James Chamblin, but the judge chose to suspend both years. Felony embezzlement carries up to a 20-year sentence under the Virginia sentencing guidelines.
Drew pleaded guilty to embezzling $10,000 in donations and annual membership fees from one of the Ashburn Shooting Stars softball teams in March. As part of his sentence, Drew was required to pay restitution to the Ashburn Girls Softball League. On Monday, Drew’s attorney said he had paid the remaining $5,839.73. The other money had been returned before charges were brought.
Drew, whose daughter, Jerica, also played softball, was the coach for the Shooting Stars Black, a 14-and-under team for girls. The Shooting Stars are the traveling teams in the Ashburn Girls Softball League.
On May 30, 2006, Drew turned himself into authorities and was later released under his own recognizance by a Loudoun County magistrate.
FIGHTING TO CONTROL his emotions, Drew read a prepared statement to Chamblin before his sentencing, pleading with the judge to accept the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office’s offer of probation.
"I have made a tremendously bad decision and I have to face the consequences," he said. "I am willing to accept my punishment, but it would not be fair to punish my family for my mistake."
While he has never said why he took the money, in court Monday Drew said the two people he sought to protect with his actions, his wife and his daughter, were more hurt by it.
"I have to live with this for the rest of my life," he said. "I hold no one responsible for these actions but myself."
IN HIS SENTENCE Chamblin said he was concerned about incidences involved larceny and stealing in Drew’s past, but that he believed Drew had paid the price for the embezzlement, both in restitution and in facing his actions.
"I think the fact that you got caught, the embarrassment to you and everything else … it’s cost you," Chamblin said.
The judge said Drew’s full restitution and the desire not to hurt Drew’s family any further caused him to suspend the two-year sentence.
"You made a mistake in judgment," he said. "I hope you never think about doing something like this again."