A woman who stole more than $21,000 from her employer was placed on probation Thursday during Carbon County guilty plea proceedings. She was one of several defendants in pending cases to enter a guilty plea before President Judge Roger N. Nanovic.

McDonald's victim

Patty Lynn Nelson, 31, of Sellersville, formerly of Jim Thorpe, was placed on probation for four and a half years on three counts of theft related to incident at the McDonald's Restaurant in Penn Forest Township.

Nelson was a manager at the restaurant and was charged by state police at Fern Ridge with taking more than $21,000 in U.S. currency from the business over a period of February and March 2008.

Defense Atty. Paul Levy told Nanovic that his client has a mental health disability and border line mental retardation. He asked the court to consider her problems and the fact she as using marijuana at the time of the thefts. He said she relocated to Sellersville to reside with her grandmother.

Nelson told Nanovic that she gave most of the money to another worker at the restaurant, who did not know she had been stealing it.

Nanovic said he would consider her mental health situation as a mitigated circumstance and agreed to the probation sentence.

He also ordered Nelson to pay restitution totaling $21,061.67, no drug use with random testing imposed, and get a drug and alcohol evaluation and follow any recommendation for treatment. Nelson will pay one-half of the restitution amount with the other half paid for a co-defendant, a juvenile who has already been sentenced in the matter.

Other pleas

Other defendants who entered pleas included:

Brian Kokowski, 31, of Lansford, pleaded to one count of simple assault. He was arrested on April 27, 2009, at a residence along W. Bertsch St., Lansford, for a domestic incident involving Heather Loar. Loar was also charged in the incident.

Nanovic placed him on probation for a year and ordered he get a D&A evaluation and have no contact with Loar.

Andrew Jason Tyahla, 40, of Lansford, pleaded to one count of disorderly conduct as a misdemeanor three. He was charged by Palmerton police for an incident on Dec. 26, 2009, along Mauch Chunk Road.

Nanovic deferred sentencing. Tyahla is currently in the county prison on a parole/probation violation.

Carmen Diacheysn, 40, of Lehighton, formerly of Nesquehoning, pleaded to one count of driving under the influence (DUI). He was arrested by Lehighton police on Aug. 11, 2009, along N. First St. Given a test, the result was .16BAC. After his arrest on the DUI count Diacheysn went to his Nesquehoning home and threatened suicide and also to shoot police during a several hour standoff. He was recently sentenced on charges related to that incident.

Nanovic sentence to serve five days to six months in jail, a fine of $300, license suspended for a year, and ordered to get a D&A evaluation. He was given credit for 70 days spent in jail on the charge and was immediately paroled.

Jonathon Helman, 25, of Lehighton, pleaded to one count of DUI. He was arrested on April 17, 2009, along Ridge St., in Lansford. Given a test, the result was .27BAC.

Nanovic sentenced him to serve six months to one day less two years in jail, a fine of $1,000, license suspended for a year, pay a testing fee of $180 and get a D&A evaluation.

He will begin the jail term on Monday, Jan. 25, at noon.

Timothy Markley, 54, of Jim Thorpe, pleaded to one count of DUI. He was arrested on May 10, 2009 along E. Patterson St., in Lansford. Given a test, the result was .21BAC.

As a first offender, Nanovic placed him on probation for six months and imposed a fine of $300, ordered he get a D&A evaluation and render 10 hours of community service.

All defendants must also pay court costs and a $50 per month supervision fee.