Former Youth Football Leader Pleads Not Guilty

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MEDINA, Ohio—Former coach and commissioner of the Medina Bees Youth Football Association, Michael Butts, had nothing to say to Fox 8 News Monday at an arraignment in Medina County Common Pleas Court.

Prosecutors say Butts, 47, allegedly stole up to $150,000 dollars from the non-profit organization during a nine-year time span.

Butts faces three felony counts, including engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, grand theft and forgery. Monday, he plead not guilty to the counts.

According to police, the investigation began back in May 2011. That is when concerned parents brought information about the missing money to police.

"We had one person who accounted for the money, spent the money, wrote the checks. So there were no checks and balances," said Chief Patrick Berarducci, with Medina Police.

Police say Butts was not only a former coach with the youth football league, but also the commissioner. He stepped down from the role when the investigation began.

"We ended up with a lot of kids whose football season potentially was going to go away because of the alleged activities of this individual," said Chief Berarducci. "I think it's a tragedy across the board."

Butts trial is slated to begin on May 7th.