Baltimore's Mayor Liked Gift Cards Too Much

Sheila Dixon is apparently a regular Sheriff of Nottingham...

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Stealing gift cards meant for poor people? Was there an episode of The Wire we missed?

Baltimore mayor Sheila Dixon has been convicted for just that. From the New York Times:

"A jury convicted Mayor Sheila Dixon on Tuesday on one count of embezzlement for stealing gift cards that were meant for poor residents, but it acquitted her of three other charges, including the most serious felony theft charge.

Ms. Dixon, whose conviction may force her from office, faced five theft-related charges, and the jury failed to reach a unanimous decision concerning one of the charges, which prompted the state prosecutor to say he was undecided on whether to refile that charge.

“The city will still continue to move forward,” Ms. Dixon said as she left the courtroom after the verdict, adding that she was headed to City Hall to get back to work. “This city will continue to run.”

But the split verdict leaves a cloud of uncertainty looming over the administration of Ms. Dixon, who took office in January 2007 as Baltimore’s first female mayor.

She still faces a trial in March on two perjury counts stemming from an accusation that she failed to report gifts.

Under state law, Ms. Dixon is supposed to be suspended from office after sentencing. But before that happens, her lawyers have said they plan to file post-trial motions and possibly appeal the verdict. If those motions and appeals fail, Ms. Dixon is likely to be forced from office and the City Council president, Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, would succeed her as mayor.

The misdemeanor charge carries a minimum sentence of a year, but it is not clear if the prosecutor will seek jail time. Even then, the judge could suspend that sentence in lieu of probationary conditions."

Read more on Dixon's shenanigans in The New York Times

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