Sales manager gets probation |

Sales manager gets probation

Staff Reports

The former sales manager of Winans Furniture was placed on probation Tuesday for embezzling $10,000 from the Minden store.

Lawrence Wayne Payne, 54, pleaded guilty to embezzlement for taking the money between April and July 2004. He told deputies he lost money gambling and embezzled from his employers in an unsuccessful attempt to win the money back.

Since his arrest, Payne had continued to gamble.

“I have some concerns that until you figure out you can’t do this any more, you’re going to get yourself in trouble,” Gamble said.

“After you stole this money from a person who put you in a position of serious trust, you go gambling again. It’s akin to a drug addict using drugs. They wouldn’t have the money to build these hotels if it was healthy for a person to be a life-long gambler,” he said.

Gamble sentenced Payne to 32 months in Nevada State Prison with a minimum of 12 months served before he is eligible for parole. He suspended the prison term and placed Payne on five years’ probation.

He ordered him to pay restitution of $175 a month, attend at least two meetings of Gamblers’ Anonymous a week and undergo counseling for gambling addiction.

“You are not to gamble in any way,” Gamble said. “You can’t play poker for matchsticks or bet on a football game at Christmas dinner.”

In addition, Payne has to inform future employers of his conviction for embezzlement.