A 49-year-old Plattsmouth man was given a prison sentence of not less than 15 months but not more than 30 months on a Class III Felony forgery conviction. Along with the sentence in the Nebraska Department of Corrections system, Douglas A. Burbee was ordered to pay $2400 in restitution within two years to Sac Federal Credit Union.
Burbee’s conviction was for fraudulently signing a family member’s name to a check that resulted in the monetary loss to SFCU. Part of the plea agreement involved the dismissal of an habitual criminal tag from the conviction which would have added more prison time to the sentence.
Cass County Deputy Attorney Steve Sunde had asked for an 8-to-10 year sentence. He said Burbee was a "public menace and has demonstrated that for 30 years—he should be behind bars." Along with drug and theft convictions, Sunde said Burbee’s four-plus page criminal history includes witness tampering (pled down from an attempted murder charge), attempted kidnapping and other forgery and fraud convictions.
Julie Bear of the public defender’s office said circumstances surrounding the forgery case mitigate the sentence suggested by Sunde. She said Burbee "was a victim" by being sent a check in the mail "in one of those scam offers" from another financial company and did not know SFCU would suffer a monetary loss. "Opportunity knocked and Mr. Burbee answered the door when he shouldn’t have," said Bear.
With Burbee’s "significant criminal record," Cass County District Court Judge Randall Rehmeier said it would be hard to place him on probation.
With credit for 22 days served, Burbee will be eligible for parole in just over seven months and if that is not granted he will "jam out" of prison in about 15 months under Nebraska’s sentencing laws.