Showers pleads guilty to theft

Friday, May 21, 2010

A former Marshall County resident, who was indicted 12 years ago, pleaded guilty Wednesday to a felony charge of theft over $10,000.

Christopher T. Showers, 41, of South Daytona, Fla., was indicted by the Marshall County grand jury in May 1998 when the indictment detailed 67 separate instances in which Showers allegedly charged items to the account of Martin Plant Services, then his employer, and kept them for himself.

In those days, MPS had a Lewisburg branch on Garrett Parkway. That has been shut down, but the company is still active, with its corporate headquarters in Sheffield, Ala.

Circuit Court Judge Robert Crigler presided Wednesday when District Attorney Chuck Crawford outlined what the state intended to prove had the case gone to trial. Other employees at MPS had seen Showers put supplies in his vehicle and that led to an investigation revealing the extent of the theft.

Records show that between December 1996 and January 1998, Showers defrauded Martin Plant Services of $10,133.25. The businesses where he charged items were Lewisburg Auto Industrial and Welding, Griffin Cook & Sons Supply Inc., Mouser Electronics, Randolph & Williams Inc., and Blalock Plumbing Electrical and HVAC Inc. His purchases ranged from one can of paint to a welding helmet and a shower stall, but never cost more than a few hundred dollars at any one time.

Crigler accepted the guilty plea and sentenced Showers to four and a half years in prison, as well as ordering him to pay restitution of the full amount of $10,133.25 to MPS.

As a "standard" offender, Showers will have to serve 30 percent of his sentence, or just over 16 months, before being eligible for parole. The days he has spent in jail since being picked up in Florida on March 9 are credited toward his sentence.

According to his jail booking sheet, Showers has a wife and child in Florida, and was employed as an electrician by K & D Electric of Port Orange, Fla. He was represented by the Public Defender's office.