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Former Grandview Mayor Remorseful At Fraud Sentencing

A federal judge has sentenced Stephen Dennis, the former mayor of Grandview, to a year and a day in prison for fraud.

In January, Dennis abruptly resigned from his position as mayor. A month later he pled guilty to wire fraud after embezzling $35,000 from his organization, Matters of the Heart. He has described the organization as a non-profit that helps local low-income people.

The money was a donation from The International House of Prayer in Grandview.

Dennis used the money to pay family bills. The plea deal called for a year and a day in prison, and that’s what Judge Howard Sachs imposed Monday. 

Roseann Ketchmark, an Assistant U.S. Attorney, says Dennis seemed genuinely sorry about the fraud at sentencing, even suggesting he was glad he got caught.

“He mentioned to Judge Sachs that in a way he was thankful that this had come to a head. That his family, specifically his daughter, can observe what happens when you carry out your life like he did,” recalls Ketchmark. “And, I’ve never seen that comment at a sentencing.”

Supporters showed up in court to vouch for Dennis. The International House of Prayer called him a “man of integrity”.  

Dennis had also taken $20,000 from a major Grandview developer, RED Legacy, in the form of scholarships for his daughter.

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