• October 24, 2014

Lampasas man gets probation in cattle theft plea

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Posted: Sunday, September 15, 2013 4:30 am

LAMPASAS — A Lampasas County man pleaded guilty Friday to taking more than 100 cattle to local auctions that belonged to his former employer and neighbor.

Glenn Russworm, 62, who was sentenced in the 27th District Courtroom of Judge John Gauntt, received probation in exchange for his plea and promise to pay nearly $60,000 in restitution.

Russworm was arrested in 2012 after a five-year investigation by special rangers with the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association.

According to lead defense counsel Eddie Shell, Russworm was the caretaker of his own cattle, as well as the cattle of his former neighbor and employer, Robert Shapiro. He was accused of taking the combined herd to auction at Lampasas Cattle Auction Inc., without Shapiro’s consent.

“The auction house keeps pretty good records, and that’s how he was caught,” Shell said.

He was charged in 2012 with two counts of cattle theft, a felony, and could have received up to 10 years in prison for each charge.

“He was actually charged with two counts under one indictment,” co-defense attorney Bobbi Shell said. “One was a theft charge, and the other was a breach of fiduciary duty charge — both are third-degree felonies. They were alleging he broke two laws with the same conduct.”

Shell said the second charge of breach of fiduciary duty was dropped during the sentencing phase of his trial, and she confirmed he had no previous convictions prior to his arrest in 2012.

“You understand you are asked to pay restitution of almost $60,000 and at the rate of $600 a month? It’s going to take you more than 10 years to pay,” Gauntt told Russworm during sentencing. “For the record, on count one, I’m going to sentence you to 10 years probation with deferred adjudication, plus court and probation costs.”

According to defense attorneys, Russworm lists his current occupation as a heavy equipment operator in Temple.

The judge also instructed Russworm to obtain his high school diploma within one year.

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