Former sheriff of Barbour County, WV, sentenced to 4 years in fe - Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

Former sheriff of Barbour County, WV, sentenced to 4 years in federal prison for mail fraud

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John Hawkins, the former sheriff of Barbour County who admitted to staging an auto accident for the insurance money, is going to spend a year and one day behind bars.

U.S. District Judge John Preston Bailey said he imposed a sentence above the advisory sentencing guideline range because Hawkins betrayed the trust of the citizens of Barbour County.

Hawkins, 48, of Philippi resigned from office four months ago when he pleaded guilty in federal court to mail fraud , U.S. Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld II said.

He will self-report to prison in July.

Hawkins told the court he staged an accident in April 2013, then conspired to fabricate a report that he submitted to Nationwide Insurance Co. so his claim would be approved. He admitted he used the U.S. Mail to submit the fraudulent claim, in the amount of $8,262.65, which he received last year..

As part of his plea deal Hawkins also make full restitution.

Ihlenfeld and Assistant U.S. Attorney John C. Parr prosecuted the case on behalf of the government. It was investigated by the U.S. Attorney’s Office Public Corruption Unit. Agents, with officers from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the West Virginia State Police leading the inquiry into Hawkins. Assistance was provided by the West Virginia Insurance Commission, Fraud Investigations Division.