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updated: 4/16/2014 4:24 PM

Plea deal possible for man accused in Gurnee Youth Baseball theft

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  • Donald Schaefer

      Donald Schaefer

 
 

The attorney for a man accused of stealing more than $80,000 from Gurnee Youth Baseball said he expects a plea deal in the case in the coming weeks.

Donald Schaefer, 52, of the 17000 block of West Windslow Drive in unincorporated Lake County, did not appear in Lake County court as expected Wednesday, but attorney Saul Ferris of Gurnee told Judge Raymond Collins he expects to have a plea deal in place by the June 10 hearing.

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Ferris said outside court that Schaefer missed Wednesday's hearing because he was confused on the court date.

The possible plea deal would involve restitution to the organization, Ferris said, but he added the amount of money involved is unknown at this time.

"He's been a law-abiding citizen his whole life who fell into some tough financial times," Ferris said.

Schaefer was arrested at his home Dec. 9 after a warrant was issued for his arrest Oct. 30. He was charged with theft over $10,000 but under $100,000.

Authorities said Schaefer stole the money while serving as volunteer treasurer for the organization.

In a letter from Gurnee Youth Baseball to its members and supporters that was provided to the Daily Herald, officials said Schaefer took $80,626 through checks and withdrawals made payable to him from a savings account.

League officials said they have taken corrective action to ensure a single volunteer will never again have control over association funds again.

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