Doña Ana County District Attorney Mark D’Antonio on Tuesday announced that Steve D. Siddall, 46, was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison after being convicted of stealing money from New Mexico State Senator Mary Kay Papen.
On December 8, 2017, a Las Cruces jury convicted Siddall on one count of forgery over $2,500, a third-degree felony, five counts of forgery, each fourth-degree felonies, and two counts of fourth-degree larceny over $500.
Assistant District Attorneys Daniel Sewell and Tim Nuccio prosecuted the case for the state.
At sentencing on Tuesday, Sewell asked for the maximum sentence of 13 and a half years in prison. Papen also asked the judge to send Siddall to prison. State District Judge Jennifer DeLaney handed down the maximum sentence, but suspended six years. DeLaney, a judge in New Mexico’s Sixth Judicial District, was assigned the case after the judges in Las Cruces recused themselves.
Siddall, who once served as Papen’s campaign treasurer, was given access to Papen’s bank accounts and entrusted to pay bills and various other authorized expenses. He was also allowed to live, rent-free, in her Las Cruces home. Prosecutors successfully argued that Siddall took advantage of that trust and kindness. Siddall was convicted of forging checks and stealing thousands of dollars from Papen.
The jury also found Siddall guilty of stealing from Papen two pieces of valuable jewelry. A $1,200 Rado Jubilee gold watch was later recovered at an El Paso pawn shop. A silver and turquoise bracelet, valued at approximately $900, was returned to police by a woman who said Siddall sold it to her for $200.
“When a person takes advantage of someone’s kindness and trust, as happened in this case, I will do everything in my power to see that they are brought to justice,” D’Antonio said. “Senator Papen regarded this defendant as a member of her extended family, and he repaid her by stealing thousands and thousands of dollars from her.”
After Siddall completes his prison sentence, he must successfully complete five years of supervised probation. Prosecutors are also asking for $10,375 in restitution for Senator Papen. A restitution hearing could be set at a later date.
The above is a press release out of Third Judicial District Attorney Mark D’Antonio’s Office.