Former Craighead County clerk sentenced to 57 months in prison

Defendant Took More Than $1.5m In County Funds

Press Release, US DOJ:

LITTLE ROCK—Former Craighead County Clerk Jacob Kade Holliday was sentenced to 57 months in federal prison today for taking more than $1.5 million in county money for his personal use.  Holliday, 34, of Jonesboro, was sentenced by United States District Court Judge James M. Moody, Jr., who also imposed three years of supervised release after Holliday completes his prison term.

In June 2020, Craighead County officials reported that a theft had occurred from the Craighead County Clerk’s office. The bank that managed the Clerk’s office account had flagged suspicious activity, and auditors concluded that approximately $1,579,057.03 was missing and had been moved to Holliday’s personal banking accounts.

Law enforcement interviewed Holliday, who admitted to taking the money to fund his businesses: Holliday Development and Management, LLC, and Total Healthcare, LLC, both of which operated restaurants and coffee shops in Jonesboro. Holliday told investigators he planned to pay the money back, but once the COVID-19 pandemic caused most of his businesses to close, he could not replace the money.

Holliday was indicted in December 2020, when a grand jury charged him with 11 counts of wire fraud for each withdrawal he made from the county account. He pleaded guilty in February of this year and acknowledged that his method was to make a transfer from the county account to one of his personal accounts and then get a cashier’s check from his personal account for the same amount. He pleaded guilty to Count 1 of the indictment, which charged him with wire fraud for his first fraudulent transfer of $101,782.97 on January 29, 2020. In his plea agreement, Holliday agreed to pay $1,579,057.03 in restitution to Craighead County.

Holliday is currently serving a 120-month sentence in a state case for forgery, and Judge Moody ordered that his federal sentence will not begin until the state sentence is completed. The FBI, Arkansas State Police, and Craighead County Sheriff’s Department conducted the investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Allison W. Bragg prosecuted the case.

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Press Release, Craighead County:

The Honorable Judge Moody on September 21, 2022, conducted the sentencing hearing for the former Craighead County Clerk, Jacob K. Holliday at 1:30 in the United States Federal Courthouse in Little Rock, Arkansas for crimes committed against County of Craighead in 2020 for embezzling of funds in relation to payroll needs of county employees and their contributions to APERS, Internal Revenue Office and Department of Finance and Administration.

Defendant, Jacob Kade Holliday plead to one count of wire fraud on February 22, 2022.

The sentencing guidelines U.S. Attorney’s office and Defense counsel placed the range of 46 months to 57 months for possible sentencing, as well the potential for up to three years of supervised probation.

Honorable Judge Moody considered a victim impact statement submitted on behalf of tax- payers of Craighead County, by and through Honorable County Judge Marvin Day.

No other testimony was given during the sentencing hearing. Craighead County Judge Marvin Day was present for the hearing to represent and be available for needs of the court.

The court imposed the maximum sentence per the federal sentencing guidelines, of 57 months of imprisonment, all to be served after the Defendant completes his imprisonment currently serving on separate State charges.

Craighead County was also awarded in amount of $1,579,057.03 in restitution.

Honorable Judge Day can be quoted as saying, “We appreciate the hard work of the US Attorney office and are thankful for Judge Moody and his consideration of our victim impact statement. Any sentence is “never enough”, but we understand that justice has been served. The citizens of Craighead County are glad to have this matter behind us.”

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