Gieseke sentenced for theft from Puhlmann
NEW ULM — Jennifer Gieseke of rural New Ulm was sentenced Thursday in Brown County Court to 120 days in jail and paying $135,000 in restitution for stealing from her employer, Puhlmann Lumber.
Judge Todd Westphal presided over the hearing.
Having pleaded guilty on two counts on Jan. 12, 2017, Gieseke was committed to the Commissioner of the Department of Corrections for 13 months. The execution of that sentence will be stayed if Gieseke successfully completes her probationary terms.
Gieseke will serve 120 days in the Brown County Jail in staggered periods of four 30-day segments, with 30 days served each year for the next four years.
Gieseke was given the option to perform 20 days of Sentenced to Service (STS) in lieu of the first 30-day segment. Gieseke indicated she intended to perform STS.
Gieseke was also ordered to perform an additional 20 hours of STS within the next two years. Gieseke can petition the court to have the additional staggered jail terms waived if she is fully compliant with all the terms of her probation, including payment of all restitution.
Gieseke is required to pay $135,000 in restitution to Puhlmann Lumber. She paid $60,000 in restitution at the sentencing hearing, pursuant to the agreement, and must pay the remainder according to a schedule agreed to by the parties. The remaining payments will be paid over the next four years and correspond with the 30 day jail segments.
The Puhlmann family and employees of Puhlmann Lumber were present in the courtroom for the hearing. Kayla Puhlmann read an impact statement on behalf of Puhlmann Lumber. In the statement, Puhlmann highlighted the many ways this incident has impacted their family, their business, their employees, and their community. Puhlmann voiced her family’s desire that the court not grant Gieseke a stay of imposition as a sentence.
Gieseke’s attorney, Tom Beito, argued for a stay imposition given Gieseke’s lack of criminal history.
The judge disagreed and stayed execution of the sentence citing other factors such as the duration of the crime and the amount of the theft.
This incident was investigated by the New Ulm Police Department.