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Former campaign workers guilty of stealing from Prince George's delegate

Two former campaign workers pleaded guilty Tuesday to stealing thousands of dollars from the campaign of a state delegate from Prince George's County.

Mary Murphy, who was chair for Del. Michael A. Jackson's campaign, and her daughter, Damiana Murphy, who was campaign treasurer, were accused by the state prosecutor of spending more than $22,000 in campaign funds for personal use in 2014 and 2015.

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Both women pleaded guilty to conspiracy and felony theft in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court on Tuesday, the state prosecutor announced. They were sentenced to probation before judgment, placed on probation for one year, ordered to perform 30 hours of community service and ordered to pay restitution.

Jackson, a Democrat whose district includes southern Prince George's County and part of northern Calvert County, notified the state prosecutor in October 2015 after he realized that his campaign account, Friends of Michael A. Jackson, was overdrawn.

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The women withdrew cash from the campaign account, bought gas for their personal vehicle and made other personal purchases, according to a statement of facts filed by the state prosecutor. Damiana Murphy wrote a $4,000 check to her mother from the campaign account for their personal benefit, according to the statement of facts.

State Prosecutor Emmet C. Davitt said in a statement that there's no way that a campaign finance officer would not know that they can't use campaign funds for personal use.

"Misuse or theft of campaign funds by those in a position of trust simply cannot be tolerated," Davitt said.

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