Electricity Theft Prompts Probation

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A Tonto Basin man will serve three months of probation for stealing electricity from APS for three months.

Kenneth Benten Cline Jr., 58, could face prison time if he violates the terms of his probation, which includes paying APS $360 for the stolen power and the county $1,500 for attorney fees.

APS disconnected service to Cline’s Tonto Basin home in October, but later realized power continued to flow, according to court records.

A representative later cut the electrical line and removed the meter. Cline told officers that he had not been at the home, which he had lived in for 10 years, for several weeks and didn’t know who had tampered with the meter, court records show.

Cline told a probation officer that he suspected two people living in his home during that time had manipulated the electrical meter unbeknownst to him.

Cline denied any wrongdoing.

“Although he denied any type of illegal activity, he stated he agreed to move forward with the plea agreement in order to resolve the matter,” probation wrote.

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