Man pleads guilty to lottery fraud

Published 10:05am Tuesday, March 26, 2013

An Albert Lea man pleaded guilty Friday to state lottery fraud after he reportedly stole multiple lottery tickets from the Gopher Stop and then cashed in the winning tickets in Albert Lea last July.

Ricky LaRon Shelton, 45, issued the plea Friday in Freeborn County District Court as part of a plea agreement between his lawyer and the Freeborn County Attorney’s Office.

He likely will see a 20-month prison sentence, said Assistant Freeborn County Attorney David Walker.

Ricky Shelton
Ricky Shelton

Walker said Shelton was on felony probation for a sale of heroin in 2008 at the time of the theft. The agreement calls for Shelton to return to probation after he is released from prison instead of having to serve an additional prison term in that case.

Court documents state Shelton stole an identified number of tickets in July from the Clarks Grove gas station. Two of the tickets were winners.

He was reportedly identified in surveillance video redeeming one winning ticket for $50 on July 7 and a second for $10 on July 10 at Hy-Vee Gas. The tickets were identified by their numbers and the specific amount of winnings.

Court records state Shelton admitted to stealing the tickets to a Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office deputy when he was questioned after the incident. He said he had a gambling problem but didn’t want any help for it.

He is slated to be sentenced June 6.

State lottery fraud carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $50,000 fine.