A key prosecution witness in the bribery case against former state Senate leader Mike Morgan will not spend any time in prison for cheating a bank.
Sam Crosby will have to pay $1,329,362 in restitution to Legacy Bank in Elk City.
Crosby, a Carney rancher, pleaded guilty in 2010 to making a false statement about cattle purchases to the bank to influence a loan. His sentencing was put off until after his testimony last February at Morgan's trial in federal court in Oklahoma City.
Last week, U.S. District Judge Vicki Miles-LaGrange sentenced Crosby, 71, to six months on home detention and ordered him to make the restitution to the bank.
His defense attorney, John Coyle, of Oklahoma City, was pleased with the sentence.
“It's very fair considering his lack of a prior record, his assistance to the government and his significant health problems,” Coyle said. “Sam Crosby is a good man who made a mistake.”
About the restitution, the attorney said, “His goal is to take care of it.”
Jurors in March found Morgan, a Democrat, guilty of accepting $12,000 in bribes from a company owned by Crosby.
The Edmond-based company, Silver Oak Senior Living, operated assisted-living centers.
Crosby told jurors he met with Morgan at the Capitol in May 2006 and asked Morgan for help — possibly legislatively — to get state health officials off his back. He testified Morgan said to him, “This is the way it works: You pay me a $1,000-a-month retainer.”
Morgan in 2007 was the author of assisted-living legislation that became law.
Morgan, an attorney, denied taking bribes. He said Crosby paid him $1,000 a month for a year for legal services.
He testified Crosby hired him to sue the Health Department. He said he later advised Crosby not to sue. He denied ever meeting Crosby at the Capitol.
Morgan was Senate president pro tem in 2005 and 2006. He was Senate co-president pro tem in 2007 and 2008. He left the Legislature at the end of 2008 because of term limits.
Crosby did not face any charges over the payments to Morgan.
Morgan, 57, of Stillwater, faces up to 10 years in prison on his bribery conviction. Morgan is seeking probation and still claims he is innocent. Sentencing is set for January.
Morgan's attorneys at trial claimed Crosby lied about what happened in an effort to get leniency in his own criminal case.
Crosby has had a series of health problems since he was charged in 2010 including a heart attack that year.
He suffered from blood clots in his lungs after hip replacement surgery this year.