Man who stole and forged checks gets state prison

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 4 May 2015 at 12:00 am

ALBION – A Lockport man who pleaded guilty to grand larceny in December was sentenced today in Orleans County Court to 2 to 4 years in state prison.

Richard Wheeler, 45, admitted in a previous court appearance that he took checks from a local farmer, forged signatures and cashed them. As part of a plea deal, he was ordered to pay $4,971 in restitution. Wheeler worked for the victim in the crime, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Wheeler has a prior driving while intoxicated conviction, making him a second felony offender. That required Judge James Punch to sentence Wheeler to at least half of the maximum sentence, the judge said.