UPDATE: Former LFUCG councilwoman pleads guilty in theft case

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Council District 2, Sasha Love Higgins Jan. 25, 2017.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Former Urban County Councilwoman Sasha Love Higgins faces up to two-years in prison after admitting to cashing bogus payroll checks at the hotel she used to manage, according to Fayette Circuit Court officials.

On Friday, she pleaded guilty to two felonies and three misdemeanors, according to court officials.

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The case began with an identity theft report in January of this year.  Court documents say while Higgins was managing a Hampton Inn in Lexington, she continued to issue fraudulent checks to a former employee months after that employee no longer worked at the hotel.

The former employee’s husband contacted Higgins to ask about the checks and she admitted she had continued to issue the checks, according to court documents.  The former employee’s husband recorded the phone call with Higgins and shared it with Lexington Police, according to investigators.

The bogus checks totaled more than $4,000, according to police.  Investigators say Higgins asked Hampton Inn to set up a MetaBank account in the former employee’s name that Higgins used to funnel the money for her own personal use, according to court documents.

Higgins resigned from the Urban County Council not long after she was charged in the criminal case.

She is scheduled to be sentenced October 5, 2017.

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Tom Kenny joined ABC 36 News in June of 2001 as a General Assignment Reporter. A native of Peoria, Illinois, he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications from Western Illinois University. He currently anchors ABC 36 News at 5pm, 6pm and 11pm. Tom has more than three decades of experience in broadcast journalism. He is the only broadcast journalist in Lexington television history to be honored with a national Edward R. Murrow Award. Tom was recognized for reporting on a story that gave a rare glimpse inside the secretive world of the Federal Witness Protection Program. He has won an Emmy Award for anchoring and another for investigative reporting, exposing the deceit and potential danger of online diploma mills. Tom has ten other Emmy nominations to his credit for investigative and feature reporting. He has won Associated Press Awards for reporting and anchoring. He has won two Addy Awards for excellence in promotional writing. Tom was the first broadcast journalist in Lexington TV history to be awarded the Silver Circle Award by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. It is one of the highest honors given by NATAS. It recognizes television professionals who have performed distinguished service within the television industry for 25-years or more. Tom was honored for more than his longevity, he was recognized for making an enduring contribution to the vitality of the television industry and for setting high standards of achievement. He was also recognized for giving back to the community as a mentor, educator and volunteer. Tom also has network broadcast experience in radio and television having worked as a sports reporter for ESPN, Sportschannel, NBC Sports and the Breeders’ Cup. He was also the studio host and halftime producer for CBS Radio Sports’ College Football Game of the Week and covered the NFL for One-On-One Radio Sports. Prior to joining WTVQ-TV, Tom was Vice-President of the Houston Astros Minor League baseball team in Lexington. He was part of the original management team that brought professional baseball back to the Bluegrass after a nearly 50-year absence. Tom has lived in Lexington since 1984. In that time, he has been heavily involved with dozens of charity and civic groups, with a special emphasis on helping Veterans. He can be reached at tkenny@wtvq.com. You can also follow Tom on Facebook www.facebook.com/TomKennyABC and Twitter @TomKennyNews. Just click on the links at the top of the page.