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Lanesboro woman pleads guilty to stealing from employer

Fri, Oct 26th, 2007
Posted in Court

PRESTON - Shayla Christine Gehrke, 36, of Lanesboro, entered a plea of guilty to one count of felony theft in Fillmore County District Court on Monday, October 22, 2007. An additional 11 counts were dismissed as part of the plea agreement.

Gehrke admitted to Judge James Fabian that she took more than $10,000 belonging to Fillmore Family Resources, while she was employed with the victim services organization.

According to court records Gehrke wrote checks on company accounts between May 5, 2006 and March 29, 2007 to pay for personal expenses, including utility bills, day care costs, car repairs, and telephone bills.

Judge Fabian ordered court services to carry out a pre-sentence investigation and set sentencing for December 12, 2007. Gehrke is expected to make restitution, with one affidavit for restitution for $17,074.74 already filed with the court.

Gehrke was represented in court by Attorney Tedman Heim of Rochester. The case was prosecuted by Jeff Hill of the Olmsted County Attorney's office.

Felony Charges

• Zachary David Zabrowski, 29, of Winona, was released on his own recognizance after posting $2,500 conditional bail after being charged in District Court with one felony count of making terroristic threats. In addition, he also faces several misdemeanor charges, including interfering with a 911 call, assault, domestic assault, criminal damage to property and violation of an order for protection.

According to the criminal complaint, it is alleged that on October 16, Zabrowski went to the rural home of a woman who had an order for protection against Zabrowski, broke the window of her car, got in the car and grabbed her by the throat. It is further alleged that he prevented her from calling 911 on her cell phone.

The woman was able to get out of the car and run to a neighbor's house and call the authorities. Zabrowski was later arrested walking down the highway.

Judge Fabian scheduled Zabrowski's next court date for November 1, 2007. The defendant is ordered to have no contact with the victim.

Motion Filed

• Attorney Fred Suhler, Jr. has file a motion in District Court asking that the charges on an amended complaint against Derrick Reagan DeBoef be dismissed.

DeBoef, of Sherrad, Illinois is charged with 32 counts of criminal sexual conduct related to his alleged involvement with a minor female while he was a youth pastor at a Spring Valley church.

Suhler argues in his motion that all charges in the case should be dismissed because the prosecuting attorney, Fillmore County Attorney Brett Corson, has a conflict of interest due to his "personal and family relationships with the leadership and members of the congregation where the defendant was previously employed creates a direct conflict of interest in this matter."

In addition, Suhler also argued that several charges should be dismissed individually because the charge was void because of vagueness or violated the establishment clause of the First Amendment. Suhler also stated that the county attorney did not have the jurisdictional authority to file several charges, when the incidents were alleged to have taken place outside of Fillmore County.

DeBoef is scheduled to appear in court on November 1 for an omnibus hearing.

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