Man stole from storage units while on probation for embezzlement

Becky Vargo • Mar 21, 2019 at 9:00 AM

A Muskegon man convicted of stealing from a storage unit in Grand Haven Township will be allowed to participate in Veterans Court, but only after he spends at least 150 days in the Ottawa County Jail.

Shawn Patrick Caughey, 48, was ordered to serve 240 days in jail when he was sentenced Monday in Ottawa County Circuit Court.

Judge Karen Miedema said that she was actually sentencing the man below the recommended guidelines so that he could participate in the Veterans Court in Muskegon County, if he is accepted into the program. He can be released to that program after 150 days in jail; otherwise, he remains in jail for 240 days.

Caughey will also be on probation for two years once released from jail. Miedema also ordered the man to pay $525 in restitution and a $200 fine.

During a hearing in January, Caughey pleaded guilty to two breaking and entering charges with intent to steal. In exchange for his plea, a larceny in building charge was to be dismissed at the time of his sentencing.

Miedema noted at the time that Caughey took Guinness beer signs from a storage unit on Aug. 21, 2018. He also took cases of paper towels and toilet paper from a storage unit in Coopersville on or about Aug. 29, 2018.

“I understand I did wrong,” Caughey said to the judge. “You give me a chance, I won’t let you down.”

Miedema reminded Caughey that he was on probation for embezzlement when he did these crimes. 

“You stole items out of storage sheds … like it was your job,” Miedema said. She noted that he had bolt cutters in his car when police stopped him. 

Caughey was on probation out of Muskegon County when he stole items from the storage units. 

He was sentenced to 30 days in jail in Muskegon County in late November 2017. He was put on probation for 15 months once released from jail. 

Records indicate the embezzlement conviction stemmed from the time he worked as a bar manager at the Lakeside Veterans Club in Muskegon.

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