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DePeyster town clerk, tax collector admits falsifying her own bill

CANTON, N.Y. - A tax collector in northern New York has admitted she falsified her own tax records to avoid paying up.

Authorities say Michelle Sheppard, town clerk and tax collector in DePeyster, has pleaded guilty in St. Lawrence County Court to two counts of attempted tampering with public records.

She has also resigned her public posts.

The state comptroller's office says its audit noted discrepancies and led to charges the 43-year-old falsified her town and county tax payments of $4,303 since 2011.

As tax collector, Sheppard was responsible for recording, depositing and reporting property taxes.

Authorities say Sheppard already repaid the bulk of her delinquent tax bills and is expected to pay full restitution and serve five years probation.

Sentencing is scheduled Oct. 26.


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