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Police Officer Convicted For Stealing From Spouses Of Fallen Colleagues

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Empty jail cell.  (Credit:Michael Kelley/Getty Images)

Empty jail cell. (Credit:Michael Kelley/Getty Images)

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TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — A former Lakewood, Wash., police officer convicted of stealing from the spouses and children of his fallen colleagues was sentenced Friday to 2 3/4 years in federal prison.

U.S. District Judge Robert Bryan sentenced Skeeter Manos, 35, of Dupont, who earlier pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud.

“This was an egregious offense,” the judge said.

Prosecutors said he stole more than $112,000 from a fund intended to benefit the families of four Lakewood officers fatally shot at a coffee shop in November 2009. The U.S. attorney’s office said Manos also admitted embezzling more than $47,000 from the Lakewood Police Independent Guild, where he served as treasurer.

He was also ordered to pay $159,000 in restitution.

Manos was fired after being charged.

He used the money for plane tickets to Las Vegas, cash withdrawals at casinos and purchases at Costco and Home Depot.

“I’ve dishonored pretty much everybody that I’ve ever liked or loved,” Manos told the court. “I’ve dishonored my profession.”

The stolen money was just a portion of more than $3.2 million contributed on behalf of the slain officers, Sgt. Mark Renninger and officers Ronald Owens, Tina Griswold and Gregory Richards. They were shot by Maurice Clemmons, who was killed by a Seattle police officer two days later.

Despite Manos’ embezzlement, the officers’ children are being taken care of, Lakewood police Chief Bret Farrar has said.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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