Former Poplar Bluff chamber executive's conviction affirmed

Saturday, May 10, 2008

ST. LOUIS -- An appellate court has affirmed the forgery conviction of a former Greater Poplar Bluff Area Chamber of Commerce executive.

Scott R. Faughn, 28, of Poplar Bluff, Mo., was convicted by a Cape Girardeau County jury in March 2007 of three felony counts of forgery. He was accused of forging checks on an account for the Highway 67 expansion project.

Circuit Judge Benjamin Lewis followed the jury's sentencing recommendation when he fined Faughn $500 on each count for a total fine of $1,500.

Faughn appealed that conviction to the Court of Appeals, Eastern District, in St. Louis.

The case reportedly was "submitted on briefs" in February by Faughn's attorney, Russell D. Oliver of Bloomfield, Mo., and Shaun Mackelprang and Jayne Woods with the Missouri attorney general's office.

"He claimed the evidence was insufficient on three of his forgery counts," according to John Fougere, press secretary for the attorney general's office.

After reviewing those briefs, the appellate court affirmed Faughn's case, along with several other cases, last week, pursuant to Rule 84.16(b).

"The court affirmed the decision without providing a written opinion," Fougere said. "That rule allows the court to affirm [a conviction] without publishing an opinion."

The charges against Faughn stemmed from an investigation by the Missouri State Highway Patrol's local Division of Drug and Crime Control into possible mismanagement of funds in the Highway 67 Corp., a group pushing for the future expansion of Highway 67 from Poplar Bluff to Fredericktown, Mo., to a four-lane highway.

When the patrol's investigation began, Faughn was serving as chairman of the Highway 67 Coalition and president of the Highway 67 Corp.

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