Former Mayor Avoids Jail Time in Theft to Gamble Case

This story was published more than 3 years ago.

The former mayor of Whiting, Indiana has been sentenced for stealing money from his campaign fund to pay for trips to casinos as well as other expenses but somehow managed to avoid jail time in the case.

Joseph Stahura was found guilty of wire fraud and filing a false tax return after he took $255,000 in campaign funds to go to the casinos and gamble, pay bills, and more. He claims that he isn't addicted to gambling, be made about 50 trips to casinos between 2014 and 2019, withdrawing about $55,000 from ATMs during the time.

Stahura's lawyers certainly seem to have earned their money, as they argued: "Stahura's conduct was wrong and illegal, but it didn't impact his role as mayor, and I think that's an important distinction Mr. Stahura's conduct was significantly different than these other politicians."

He walked away being sentenced with two years probation, one year of home detention, and a fine of $7,500. He was facing 25 years in prison.

About the author

Dustin Jermalowicz // News Editor
Dustin Jermalowicz
Dustin has a long-standing passion for gambling. He has been writing professionally on the subject and breaking industry news for Casino Listings since 2011. His favorite casino games include Blackjack, Poker, and Hi/Lo. A proud native of Detroit, Dustin currently lives in Michigan.
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15 January 2021 - 9:52pm

I may sound harsh but it certainly doesn't seem fair. I have seen so many news in the past about people getting sentences for minor felonies while here a politician can avoid jail time and get only probation for such case. 50 trips in 5 years means 10 trips a year on average- almost every month so saying that it wasn't a problem doesn't make any sense.