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Former Executive Director of Eden Chamber of Commerce Pleads Guilty To Embezzlement in Rockingham County Superior Court of North Carolina

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Jennifer Marie Barton Sentenced to a Minimum of 1 Year in Prison

WENTWORTH – On June 29, 2022, Jennifer Marie Barton, 48, pled guilty in Rockingham County Superior Court to seven counts of Felony Larceny by Employee and Obtaining Property by False Pretense. Superior Court Judge Stan Allen sentenced Barton to two consecutive active sentences for a total minimum of 12 months (1 year) to a maximum of 34 months (2 years and 10 Months) in the North Carolina Department of Adult Corrections. Under North Carolina Law, Barton will have to serve a minimum of one year in prison before she is eligible for release. Judge Allen also ordered Barton to pay restitution in the amount of $24,686.40 to the Eden Chamber of Commerce. Barton paid the full amount of restitution on the day she was sentenced.

On August 19, 2021, representatives from the Board of Directors of the Eden Chamber of Commerce notified the Eden Police Department that the Board discovered Jennifer Barton, Executive Director of the Eden Chamber of Commerce, had embezzled a substantial amount of money from the Chamber. After a thorough and professional investigation, detectives from the Eden Police Department were able to determine Barton embezzled $24,686.40 from the Chamber over the course of approximately a year, beginning in June of 2020.

District Attorney Jason Ramey said: “The Eden Chamber of Commerce has been serving businesses and the community of Eden well since 1955. This unfortunate incident is not a reflection of their long and distinguished service, and I am thankful for the vital role the Chamber serves in promoting economic vitality in Eden. I commend the Board of Directors for immediately notifying the Eden Police Department after discovering Barton’s crimes and for their complete cooperation. I would also like to thank Eden Police Chief Clint Simpson, Detective Aubrie Stoneman, and Assistant District Attorney Stephanie Reese for ensuring that Barton was held accountable for her actions and for recovering the embezzled funds for the Chamber of Commerce.”

News Release From The Office of District Attorney Jason Ramey • July 5, 2022