LaPean restitution hearing set for February 1

By LeAnn R. Ralph

MENOMONIE — A Dunn County judge has scheduled a half-day restitution hearing for a former Colfax resident convicted of transferring another’s personal property with a value exceeding $100,000.

The Honorable Judge William C. Stewart, Jr., scheduled the restitution hearing for February 1, 2013, at a court hearing held September 7 for Greg LaPean, 55, former owner of LaPean Implement in Menomonie.

LaPean was convicted by a Dunn County jury last September of a felony charge of transferring another’s personal property with a value exceeding $100,000 for defrauding Security State Bank out of New Auburn of about $1 million by selling tractors and other farm equipment used as collateral for the loan and not repaying the bank.

In February, LaPean was sentenced to six months in jail, to 250 hours of community service (50 hours for each year of probation), and to restitution, with payments to begin in April.
At a court hearing in July, LaPean’s attorney, Lester Pines of Cullen Weston Pines & Bach out of Madison, said he intended to file a motion with the court on a legal issue contending that the bank is not entitled to restitution.

Pines, who addressed the court by speaker phone at the September 7 hearing, said that because the bank was listed as a creditor in the bankruptcy proceedings for LaPean, the bank could not seek restitution.

Judge Stewart vacated an earlier order for restitution and said he needed to hear evidence on the nature of the claims and the amount of damages being sought.

Other restitution issues could include interest and penalties, he said.

“We are arguing in the abstract right now,” Judge Stewart said.

The restitution hearing will be complicated because it involves multiple transactions over a period of time, he said.

Dunn County assistant district attorney Andrew Maki said he would need about an hour for the restitution hearing.

Pines said the hearing would take much longer than an hour.

Although the court clerk offered December 28 and January 4 as possible dates for the restitution hearing, Pines said those two dates did not work with his schedule.

A half-day restitution hearing in the LaPean case has been scheduled for February 1 beginning at 9 a.m. and could go until noon if necessary.