Cronk sentencing set for Friday

Former undersheriff pleaded guilty to embezzlement in March

Former Montezuma County Undersheriff Robin Cronk will be sentenced Friday after pleading guilty to public corruption charges earlier this year.

Sentencing is scheduled for 9 a.m. Friday, May 30, at the Montezuma County Courthouse on Main Street, Cortez.

In March, Cronk pleaded guilty to a Class 5 felony charge of embezzlement and a Class 2 misdemeanor charge of first-degree official misconduct. A Montezuma County grand jury indicted him in August on 17 felony counts of embezzlement and the lone misdemeanor charge.

Under the terms of the plea deal, Cronk is likely to be sentenced to 30 days in jail, ordered to pay restitution, forfeit weapons and serve six months of unsupervised probation. The deal also enables Cronk to choose where to serve his jail term.

Unopposed to the defendant's request to select the jail, District Court Judge Todd Plewe has insisted the sentence be carried out behind bars - not in a halfway house or under home-monitored detention. In March, Plewe said he could impose a longer jail sentence. The public corruption charges stem from Cronk's alleged abuse of Montezuma County Sheriff's Office financial accounts over 26 months starting in February 2011. Records show Cronk bilked taxpayers out of nearly $7,500 for personal gunsmithing services, vehicle maintenance, holsters, generators, gun components, ammunition and firearms.

Now a resident of Phoenix, Ariz., Cronk was tapped as Montezuma County undersheriff in January 2011 after Sheriff Dennis Spruell's election. He was forced to resign the post in June 2013.