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DL man pleads to lesser charge in swindling case

A 57-year-old Detroit Lakes man accused of swindling money from his aging aunt has been ordered to serve 90 days in connection with the case.

Reed Satrom pleaded guilty to Class C felony misapplication of entrusted property as part of an agreement that reduced the severity of that charge and dismissed a Class B felony charge of endangerment of a vulnerable adult.

Satrom received a five-year sentence and was ordered to first serve 90 days, according to Assistant Cass County State's Attorney Tristan Van de Streek.

He must report to jail July 7.

Satrom will spend 60 days on electronic home monitoring, according to defense attorney Bruce Quick.

Satrom will serve five years of supervised probation and was ordered to pay more than $20,000 in restitution, Van de Streek and Quick said.

Cass County District Court documents suggested Satrom swindled his aunt, who is now older than 80, out of thousands of dollars.

"It's obvious that upon further investigation the case was viewed different than how it was initially charged," Quick said, citing the reduction in charges. "My client had taken care of his aunt basically his entire adult life and there was no, in his view, provable conduct that he was ever negligent in care."

The case had been scheduled to go to trial next week. Prosecutors had subpoenaed two Forum reporters in connection with the case, but The Forum was planning to object to the subpoenas, citing North Dakota's shield law.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Brittany Lawonn at (701) 241-5541