LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – The former chief of the McMahan Fire Department was sentenced to 41 months in federal prison Monday afternoon. Paul Barth admitted to taking around $200,000 in donations given to the Crusade for Children and using it for himself.
In June, Barth pleaded guilty to 15 of the 16 counts and agreed to pay back the money given to help kids in need and money to the McMahan Fire Department.
Although Barth agreed to pay back the money, he showed up in court empty-handed. Thomas Clay, his attorney, said the reason was something out of Barth's control because a closing on the sale of his home fell through. Clay said Barth would be signing a mortgage to assure payment of the restitution.
Barth did not address the court during sentencing or the media after. He did issue a written statement which said:
"I apologize first to my family and friends for all the pain that I have caused them throughout this matter, and for the pain they will endure in the future.
I apologize to the Community and all those who believed in me, for letting them down as well.
I have kept my word and have accepted responsibility for my actions, and anything questionable, just as I said I would.
I ask for you forgiveness, and for your prayers for both myself and my family."
Pat Walsh, the current McMahan fire chief, said his department is ready to move forward.
"We just hope that people realize the actions of one person certainly doesn't represent the 40 plus men and women who are here everyday to do the job we do," said Chief Walsh.
Clay said the Bureau of Prisons would give Barth 45 to 60 days before he has to report to prison. Clay said they have requested Barth serve his time at the Federal Correctional Institution in Manchester, KY.
In the meantime, Clay said Barth will attempt to sell his home.