Former corrections officer sentenced to nine months in jail

PRAIRIE DU CHIEN — A former Prairie du Chien corrections officer accused of being sexually involved with prisoners will spend nine months in jail for sending an inmate greeting cards and a postal money order.

James Trentin, 60, was sentenced Friday in Crawford County Circuit Court for delivering articles to an inmate and three counts of felony bail jumping, said Vernon County District Attorney Timothy Gaskell, who was special prosecutor in the case. Grant County Circuit Judge Robert Van De Hey presided at the sentencing.
Trentin faced charges in March 2008 after being accused of bribing prisoners for sexual favors. He entered an Alford plea — which maintains innocence but admits evidence is sufficient to be found guilty — to three counts, with all other charges dropped.

He was under court order not to have contact with prisoners when he sent the cards and money order in June 2008, Gaskell said.

A Grant County jury convicted Trentin on the new charges six weeks ago, Gaskell said, even though he continued to maintain his innocence.

“I was glad, at the sentencing, that the judge said there was overwhelming evidence against him,” Gaskell said.

Handwriting and fingerprint experts testified Trentin had sent the items, Gaskell said.


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