Tammy Hall appears in federal court, pleads guilty to wire fraud
Photo: Video by fox4now.com
FORT MYERS, Fla. - Tammy Hall, whose political ambitions landed her a Fort Myers City council seat and until now, a place on the Lee County Commission, pleaded guilty in federal court.
"Tammy, do you feel any remorse?" Fox 4 reporter Gabrielle Sarann asked Hall, as she walked into federal court with her brother by her side. Her attorney responded, "We're not going to say anything at this point."
Hall, a now-former member of the Lee County Commission, refused to answer questions.
Hours later, she made a brief statement. "Why did you do it?" Sarann asked Hall. "I'm very sorry," she said "It's been a very hard day today. I appreciate the support I've had in the community."
Inside a federal court room in downtown Fort Myers, Hall pleaded guilty to wire fraud and admitted embezzling $33,756 of her 2010 campaign fund to support her lifestyle.
"Tammy, how did this all start?" Sarann pressed Tammy. Her attorney said she's not answering questions.
As part of the plea deal, Hall agreed to pay back the money she siphoned, hand over her shotgun, passport and check in with the courts if she leaves the state.
These requirements aren't enough to those who financed her run for office.
"It's a sad day for us women," said Marion Briggs, who donated $250 to Hall's campaign. At the time, Briggs said, she felt Hall had the best interest of the community at heart.
"I don't believe she didn't know what she was doing," said Briggs. "It puts into question her entire character and what she's all about."
Also during the hearing, an assistant US attorney said Hall is suffering from some depression, which he said is normal given the circumstances.
"Is there anything you want to say before going in," Sarann asked Hall.
Hall's out on a $50,000 unsecured bond. The next phase will be her sentencing. She faces a maximum of 20 years in prison, a fine of up to $250,000 and three years of supervised release. She hasn't served any time behind bars