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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Tennessee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, April 22, 2019

Dickson Attorney Sentenced To Federal Prison For Stealing Over $1.36 Million From Trust Funds Of Clients

Victims Include Daughter of Tennessee State Trooper Killed in the Line of Duty

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – April 22, 2019 - Jackie Lynn Garton, 54, of Dickson, Tennessee, was sentenced today to 92 months in prison for stealing more than $1.36 million from the trust funds of clients, announced U.S. Attorney Don Cochran for the Middle District of Tennessee.  U.S. District Judge Eli Richardson ordered Garton to be taken into custody immediately at the conclusion of the hearing.

Garton, a practicing attorney in Dickson, was charged in December 2018 with wire fraud, tax fraud and aggravated identity theft and pleaded guilty to all charges. 

According to court documents, Garton served as the trustee for several estates, including the daughter of a Tennessee State Trooper who was killed in the line of duty in 2005.  Beginning in 2009, Garton began withdrawing funds under false pretenses from her account and others, without the clients’ knowledge.  Garton converted the funds into cashier’s checks and used the money to enrich his lifestyle, including purchasing luxury items including a Jaguar automobile, a boat and a house.

The deceased Trooper’s daughter was unaware of the account withdrawals until 2017, when at age 24, she wanted to open a bookstore, only to learn that her account had been depleted.  Garton admitted that he stole approximately $1.2 million dollars from this client and a total of more than $1.36 million from her and other clients.

In conjunction with the preparation of his 2016 taxes, Garton under reported his income to the IRS, claiming his total income was $95,875, while he actually received at least $367,223, which included funds stolen from clients.  Garton failed to report the stolen income from 2009 through 2016 and intended to defraud the IRS of more than $350,000.

This case was investigated by the FBI and the IRS-Criminal Investigation and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Sara Beth Myers and Kathryn Booth.

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Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Identity Theft
Contact: 
David Boling Public Information Officer 615-736-5956 david.boling2@usdoj.gov
Updated April 22, 2019