Hill Sentenced to 18 Years in Corruption Scandal

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    NBCDFW.com
    Don Hill and Sheila Farrington Hill talk to the media after a federal jury returned guilty verdicts in the Dallas City Hall bribery/conspiracy trial.

    Former Dallas Mayor Pro Tem Don Hill and two others have been sentenced for bribery and extortion as part of a City Hall corruption case.

    U.S. District Judge Barbara Lynn sentenced Hill to 18 years in prison.

    "I'm ashamed of your conduct," Lynn told Hill. "It is outrageous and unacceptable."

    When he spoke to the judge before the sentence, Hill admitted making mistakes, but insisted that no witness testified that he "asked them for any money."

    Hill asked the citizens of Dallas to "forgive me for bringing this kind of embarrassment on them."

    But Lynn said she did not believe that Hill is contrite about his role in the bribery conspiracy.

    "I believe you're in it up to your eyeballs," she said. "I wish it were not so, but I believe that."

    Hill's wife, Sheila Farrington Hill, and D'Angelo Lee, his appointee to the Dallas Plan Commission, were also sentenced Friday.

    Lee was sentenced to 14 years in prison. His sentencing came after a parade of character witnesses told Lynn that Lee is a good man who deserves a light sentence.

    But the judge told Lee, "You betrayed the trust of the people. That, in my judgment, is not a forgivable offense."

    Lee and Hill both faced a maximum of 85 years.

    Sheila Farrington Hill was sentenced to nine years in prison for helping launder hundreds of thousands of dollars from the scheme. The judge said she deserved a lighter sentence because she was not a public official. But Lynn also said she was a vital part of the plot.

    "If you were not in it, I don't think it would have happened," Lynn said. "You were an integral part of the scheme."

    Sheila Farrington Hill faced up to 55 years in prison.

    Hill, his wife and Lee were convicted last year after a trial that lasted several months involving the shaking down of developers for bribes over low-income housing project approvals from the city. Don Hill and his lawyer are also facing punishment for contempt of court for violating the judge's gag order before the trial.

    Don Hill must surrender to begin serving his sentence on April 27. Lynn refused to allow Hill to remain free pending appeal.
    He was also ordered to pay restitution of $112,500 and serve three years of supervised release after he is released from prison.

    Lee's prison sentence is to be followed by three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay $112,500 restitution.

    Hill's wife will serve three years supervised release after her prison sentence. She did not testify at the trial or the sentencing.

    Two more convicted defendants in the case, Darren Reagan and Rickey Robertson, are due to be sentenced Monday.


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