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Trial set in lottery theft, charges added

By Kathy Prucnell, Islander Reporter

Mehrhoff

October court dates have been set for the former clerk of a Holmes Beach convenience store who allegedly stole $2,223 in Florida lottery tickets.

Jeanna Mehrhoff, 29, of 7504 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, was arrested Feb. 1 by the Holmes Beach Police Department. The arrest stemmed from allegations that she printed and failed to pay for Florida lottery tickets while working as a cashier for two months at Timesaver, 5353 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach.

Timesaver provided HBPD with detailed records supporting the allegations, according to the police report.

Shelly Safford, public affairs specialist with the Florida Lottery, said that while the lottery may assist local law enforcement in investigations, there was no such assistance provided in the Mehrhoff incident.

The 12th Judicial Circuit Court State Attorney’s Office filed third-degree felony grand theft/embezzlement charges Feb. 8 against Mehrhoff.

There have been depositions taken in the felony case, according to Timesaver representative Mondher Kobrosly.

Judge Janette Dunnigan will hold a docket sounding Oct. 10, and a trial is set for the week of Oct. 22 at the Manatee County Judicial Center, 1051 Manatee Ave., Bradenton.

According to public defender Anne Hunter’s office, the trial will be a non-jury trial.

After posting bond and being released from the Manatee County jail on the theft charges in February, Mehrhoff was again arrested March 3 by HBPD. She was stopped for driving erratically on Gulf Drive, according to the police report.

She was charged with first-degree misdemeanor marijuana possession in connection with a search of her vehicle.

In the March 3 affidavit signed by Mehrhoff that is filed in the Manatee County circuit court records, she admitted that a pipe, a bag of marijuana and a grinder found by HBPD police were hers.

A misdemeanor charge on the possession of 2.2 grams of marijuana was filed April 4.

Mehrhoff’s assistant public defender, William Sheslow, on June 6 filed a motion to dismiss the charges as “facially unconstitutional.”

Sheslow argued in his motion that Mehrohoff’s charges should be dismissed because a 2002 state marijuana possession law did not require her to know the illicit nature of the crime.

A notice of hearing and status conference on the misdemeanor drug charges will be held Oct. 5 at the judicial center.

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