Former police officer sentenced to eight months behind bars

Officer stole more than $60,000 from a youth charity

FULLERTON, Calif. -  A former La Habra police officer who stole more than $60,000 from an Orange County charity that raises money for youth scholarships was sentenced today to 240 days in jail.

Kirk Robert Lotzgesell, 45, of Winchester, stole from the Orange County Cop Bowl Association, which includes police officers who play football games against other law enforcement agencies and fire departments to raise money for student scholarships. He pleaded guilty to felony grand theft Dec. 18.

Lotzgesell was also put on five years of formal probation. Lotzgesell was on the La Habra police force until January 2006. He volunteered for the unpaid treasurer post for the association in 2007, falsely telling the organization's officials he was an active law enforcement officer but was on medical leave, according to the Orange County District Attorney's

Lotzgesell embezzled the money by writing checks to himself and getting
cash through automated teller machines. The scheme was discovered when the Internal Revenue Service contacted the organization about the failure to filetax returns, triggering a financial review, according to prosecutors.

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