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A former Dillon city judge who was sentenced to two years in the custody of the Montana Department of Corrections for pocketing more than $30,000 in fine payments will not have her sentence reviewed.

Crystal Mae Thompson pleaded guilty to theft and was sentenced by a District Court judge in November to seven years in DOC custody with five of them suspended. She was also ordered to pay more than $34,000 in restitution.

She spent about two months in the Beaverhead County jail awaiting transfer to the DOC, spent another two months at a DOC assessment center in Billings and was sent to the Butte Pre-Release Center in March, according to the DOC. That is typically a six-month stay. 

But Thompson had asked that her sentence be reviewed by the Sentence Review Division of the Montana Supreme Court, which can decide if terms are inadequate or excessive. The panel of judges had set a hearing in Thompson’s case for last Friday, but she withdrew the request before it was held, an administrator for the division said Tuesday. That means the sentence stands.

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Thompson resigned from the bench in August 2017 amid a probe by Dillon Police, other local officials and the Montana Division of Criminal Investigation that resulted in charges being filed.

According to prosecutors, Thompson admitted to a state investigator that she stole funds from the Dillon City Court, made “random” adjustments to records and deposited the stolen cash in her personal checking account.

Thompson pleaded guilty to theft as part of an agreement with prosecutors from the Montana Attorney General’s Office. As part of the plea deal, the state dropped a second charge tampering with public records or information.

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Government and politics reporter

Mike Smith is a reporter at the Montana Standard with an emphasis on government and politics.

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