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2002-12-02T00:00:00.000Z

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Wrong Louis Hentzen?

Mr. Louis J. Hentzen

Vice President

National Association of Court Administrators

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National Association of Court Administrators

Background Information

Employment History

District Court Administrator

National Association for Court Management

Affiliations

Board Member
National Association for Court Management

Web References (4 Total References)


The Wichita Eagle | 11/27/2002 | Former court administrator faces 11 charges

www.kansas.com [cached]

Former Sedgwick County chief court administrator Louis Hentzen has been charged with 11 counts of official misconduct, accused of double-billing the county and state on his expense account.

Each of the charges is a Class A misdemeanor.If convicted on all counts, he could face a maximum of 11 years in jail and $27,500 in fines, said Jeanette Clary, spokeswoman for District Attorney Nola Foulston.
Hentzen pleaded not guilty to the charges on Monday and faces a Dec. 9 preliminary hearing.
"We regret... that Mr. Hentzen and the taxpayers of the state of Kansas will have to spend thousands of dollars to litigate this dispute over, at most, a few hundred dollars worth of out-of-town business meals," said Dan Monnat, Hentzen's lawyer.
...
The expenses were part of about $20,000 of public money that Hentzen spent on business trips in and out of Kansas.
Records show he traveled out of state 17 times from March 2001 to February 2002.The criminal charges relate to spending from November 2000 to February 2002.
Hentzen traveled to conferences and meetings as a representative of the courts and as vice president of the National Association of Court Administrators.
County records show that Hentzen spent thousands of dollars at restaurants across the country such as the House of Blues in New Orleans, the Rusty Scupper in Baltimore and Tony Roma's at the Stardust Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
...
Hentzen has defended his spending, saying it was necessary to perform his job and to represent the state of Kansas on national bodies dealing with such issues as technology in the courts and countering terrorism.
...
Sedgwick County judges were disqualified because they had all worked with Hentzen, an employee of the county justice system since 1974.
Hentzen wrote the county a check for $1,800 and resigned his $71,000-a-year job on April 9.
...
Before, Hentzen could -- and sometimes did -- approve his own expenses.
Hentzen's actions led the state Legislature to tighten controls on court spending.
After the newspaper report, House members rejected a bill -- sponsored by Buchanan and Hentzen -- that would have freed the courts from having to follow county purchasing procedures.


National Association for Court Management

www.nacmnet.org [cached]

LOUIS J. HENTZEN District Court Administrator


NACM Board Of Directors

www.nacmnet.org [cached]

Louis J. Hentzen District Court AdministratorEighteenth Judicial District Court525 N. MainWichita, KS 67203(316) 383-7302 Fax (316) 383-7560lhentzen@distcrt18.state.ks.us


Former County Worker

www.monnat.com [cached]

Louis Hentzen, former chief court administrator for Sedgwick County, has admitted double-billing the county and state for travel expenses and has entered a pretrial diversion program.

If Hentzen keeps a clean record for a year, 11 misdemeanor charges of official misconduct will be dismissed and his record cleared, according to court documents.
He also will have to pay $3,185 in restitution to the county, perform 100 hours of community service and attend a theft counseling program.
The criminal charges were filed against Hentzen on Nov 21.
...
The meal charges were part of about $20,000 in taxpayer-paid expenses that Hentzen ran up while traveling on behalf of the courts or court-related professional associations.
The Eagle investigation found, and a Kansas Bureau of Investigation probe confirmed, that Hentzen paid for meals on his county credit card on the same days he claimed county or state per-diem payments that were supposed to cover the cost of his meals.
Among the charges were tabs for $114 at the House of Blues in New Orleans, $128 at Tony Roma's at the Stardust casino in Las Vegas, and $331 at the Rusty Scupper on Baltimore's Inner Harbor.
Prosecutor Ann Swegle said the Sedgwick County district attorney's office was prepared to take Hentzen to trial.
...
In the diversion agreement, Hentzen admitted he "committed the acts which constitute the elements of the offenses of official misconduct."
...
"Mr. Hentzen is content with this compromise agreement because... it makes clear that Mr. Hentzen is not guilty of any criminal wrongdoing," Monnat said.
...
After The Eagle article, Hentzen wrote the county a check for $1,800 and resigned his $71,000-a-year job. The county never cashed the check because of the ongoing criminal prosecution.
Swegle said that not only is Hentzen paying restitution for the 11 incidents cited in the criminal counts, he also will pay back the county for 10 earlier incidents that couldn't be prosecuted because of a statute of limitations.
Hentzen remains unemployed but is looking for work to comply with the terms of his diversion agreement. The agreement specifies that he must be lawfully employed or in school while under supervision.

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