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Trial set for Sweet case

YAKIMA - Wednesday, March 4, 2013 is when Sunnyside Interim City Manager Frank Sweet gets his day in court on charges stemming from his time working for the city of Selah.

In August, county prosecutors filed three of the five charges against Sweet requested by Selah police. Two involve theft and another is related to injuring or destroying public records.

Appearing yesterday, Thursday, before Judge Blaine Gibson in Yakima County Superior Court, Sweet and attorney Mike Kelly agreed on the trial date with Yakima County Prosecutor Jim Hagarty. In preparation for the trial, Sweet will appear in court on Feb. 7, 2013 for an omnibus hearing.

Yesterday marked Sweet's second appearance this week in the county court system, as on Monday he was in a mediation conference on a small claims case brought against him by Gordon Meling of Blaine.

That suit seeks $5,000 against Sweet and his wife. Meling, a former garbage service provider for Selah, claims he loaned the Sweets $15,000 about 10 years ago and he is still owed $9,000.

Meling says he went to small claims to avoid lawyer fees and is willing to settle for $5,000. Meling added that the loan took place after he had sold his garbage business and was no longer Selah's contractor.

A small claims trial has been set for Dec. 3.

"Yes, I owe him the money and we're working out the details," Sweet said.

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