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Press Release

Former Director Pleads Guilty to Stealing $300,000 from Home for Disabled Persons

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Missouri

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced today that the former director of a program that provided a home for disabled persons in Higginsville, Mo., pleaded guilty in federal court today to embezzling more than $300,000 from the organization.

Terri Arlene Marr, 51, of Warrensburg, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Dean Whipple to two counts of theft in connection with a health care benefit program.

Marr was the director of the Progressive Alternative Living, Inc. (PAL) from 1991 through 2013. PAL is an organization that operates a home in Higginsville for disabled persons in need of assistance. PAL receives reimbursement for many of these individuals from Medicaid. Marr was responsible for keeping strict and accurate accounts of all money received by and disbursed for and on behalf of PAL.

By pleading guilty today, Marr admitted that she used PAL credit cards to pay personal expenses. Marr also made payments on her personal credit cards out of the PAL bank account from 2001 through 2013.

Marr also admitted that, from 2001 through 2013, she issued payroll checks to an individual who was not an employee of PAL. These payroll checks total approximately $186,038.

Under the terms of today’s plea agreement, Marr must pay restitution to PAL for the total amount of the loss, not limited to the amounts set forth in the indictment and the two counts of conviction. If the parties are unable to agree to a loss figure, the court will decide the matter by a preponderance of the evidence.

Marr must forfeit to the government a money judgment of $327,544, which represents the proceeds of the offenses.

Under federal statutes, Marr is subject to a sentence of up to 20 years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $500,000. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul S. Becker. It was investigated by the FBI and the Higginsville, Mo., Police Department.

Updated January 9, 2015