Fennell Rejects Plea Deal Again


A former Vigo County school official has rejected a plea deal offer a second time.

Franklin Fennell appeared in an Indianapolis courtroom on Tuesday for a pre-trial hearing.

Fennell and his attorney discussed terms on whether to accept or reject the current offered plea deal, which he originally rejected on September 7th.

Fennell decided to again reject the plea deal on Tuesday, which means his trial remains set for December 11th.

The plea deal offer will expire on Monday, November 27.

If it goes to trial, federal prosecutors will argue a level 19 offense. That means Fennell, if convicted, could face a sentence of 30 to 37 months in prison.

Fennell is one of two men arrested in the theft and bribery investigation at the Vigo County School Corporation.

Frank Shahadey, the other man arrested in the case, pleaded guilty to wire fraud and theft of federal funds. He admitted to stealing more than $80,000 from the school corporation.

A judge sentenced Shahadey to 16 months in prison, with credit for 11 months already served. His release date is set for December 31.

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