Rossy judge: ‘The total deserves less than the sum of its part’

(Note: This report was filed with information not in the previous press release)

By Deb Murphy

Dawndee Rossy was sentenced to nine years, minus 1,369 days served, on embezzlement and other felonies, totaling 88 charges, while employed as a supervisor in Inyo County’s Department of Health and Human Services.

The decision was handed down Tuesday by appointed Judge Philip Argento, marking the end of a four-year long case.

Argento included the time Rossy was under electronic monitoring in the credited days subtracted from the sentence, reducing the time she could serve in state prison to five and one fourth years. The sentence also requires restitution of $1.8 million, adding unpaid state taxes in excess of $272,000 to the $1.5 million embezzlement charges.

In late February, District Attorney Thomas Hardy asked for a sentence of 22 years and eight months. Defense attorney David Evans asked for proportionality, citing high-profile white-collar crimes with defendants spending significantly less than the recommended 22 years in jail.

The cases Argento took into consideration included a 12-year sentence for Bell City Administrator Robert Rizzo and probation for Inyo County Sheriff Don Dorsey, convicted of seven felonies including embezzlement of county funds in the 1980s.

“You have to look at the case as a whole,” Argento said. “The total deserves less than the sum of its part.” He also noted that the sentence would have been lower if tried in federal court. Under California law, he was required to apply enhancements to the charges.

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9 Responses to Rossy judge: ‘The total deserves less than the sum of its part’

  1. Buzz Killington April 27, 2017 at 5:56 am #

    With prop 57 she will eligible for parole and with a high probability of being released from prison by the end of 2017.

    GOOGLE PROP 57…the more you know

  2. Rick O'Brien April 26, 2017 at 6:14 pm #

    MP…she could do community service for the next 30 years and still not even put a dent in what she stole. AND, she didn’t get a NINE year sentence…she got a 5 year sentence, which means in reality , 2 and a half. I don’t equate home monitoring to sitting in a prison cell. And as for all of us that wouldn’t last a week in state prison, you are right… but I (those that agree with me) would never steal a million dollars or do anything that would send me to prison in the first place. 2 and a half years for one and a half million dollars. Such a deal

  3. Earl Duran April 26, 2017 at 10:36 am #

    Maybe now she can get her teeth fixed. They look horrible in that photo. With all the money she stole. Dumb

  4. mouthpiece April 26, 2017 at 3:14 am #

    Give me a break, slap on the wrist? A nine year prison sentence is hardly a slap on the wrist. Crime pays? I would like to see any of you last just one week in state prison. This isn’t a murder case. If it was she would probably get less time. Yes she took advantage of her position, yes it was wrong. How likely is it that she will do it again? She will never have another job like the one she had. It is no different than all the local, state, or federal agencies who go on shopping sprees at the end of each year purchasing unneeded and unneccesary items to ensure their grant money and or budgets don’t get cut. That too is taking advantage, and stealing in my opinion. If prison deterred crime, prisons wouldn’t be so overcrowded. It costs an average what, some $40,000 a yr to incarcerate a person? On top of that the state has to pay any and all medical and dental care. This case is about money isn’t it? Crime pays alright at the public’s exspence. Prison isn’t the answer for every crime, it is for those who are an actual danger and hurt people. Why not community service? She will never be able to pay the money back, at least that way she could at least work some of her debt off.

  5. Buzz Killington April 25, 2017 at 7:21 pm #

    Usually defendants don’t have the authority to ask D.A’s and Judges to be put on a high dollar amount of bail and also be put on electronic monitoring. So if I was you Rick O’brien, I would vent my frustration to the Inyo County District Attorney since they were the ones who put her on Electronic Monitoring.

  6. Rick O'Brien April 25, 2017 at 3:27 pm #

    It’s total BS that she gets credit for the 1300 days she spent on wearing ankle monitor. That is shaving almost FOUR FREAKIN’ YEARS off of her sentence ! Is this WHY the defense dragged this out for 4 years, cause they KNEW in advance it would count when she was sentenced ? Home arrest is not equal to prison time. The judge should be recalled !
    And it’s also a joke to think that even a fraction of the million dollars plus she stole, will ever be paid.

  7. Nes Lessman April 25, 2017 at 11:05 am #

    Well kids…crime DOES pay! No wonder she has a smirk on her face for her mug shot.

  8. BobM April 24, 2017 at 7:15 am #

    Does the judge have any idea how she will repay the money

    • Steve April 24, 2017 at 12:47 pm #

      The restitution part of the sentencing is pretty much symbolic. She would have to win the lottery before any money goes back to the county.


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