A Dexter man was sentenced Monday at the Piscataquis County Courthouse for taking money for home repairs he did not complete and writing bad checks, according to the district attorney’s office.
Stephen M. Lancaster, 34, of Dexter was ordered to pay more than $27,000 in restitution to eight victims after previously pleading guilty to one count of Class B theft and one count of Class C negotiating a worthless instrument, Assistant District Attorney R. Christopher Almy said.
Lancaster was sentenced to five years in prison, with all of it suspended, and three years probation on the theft charge. He was also sentenced to two years in prison, all of it suspended, and two years of probation for writing bad checks.
Lancaster ran a home repair business out of his previous residence in the Piscataquis County town of Parkman, Almy said after the sentencing. Between Dec. 1, 2016, and Oct. 21, 2018, Lancaster took about $35,000 in payments for work he never did. He repaid about $8,000 but still owes victims the majority of the money he stole, according to the long-time prosecutor.
A condition of Lancaster’s probation is that he not work in home construction if he is self-employed and that he have a job that provides him with a W-2 form at the end of the year, Almy said.
Lancaster’s defense attorney, Ezra Willey of Bangor, declined to comment on the case.
The maximum sentence for a Class B crime is 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $20,000. Class C crimes carry a sentence of up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000.