Local Business Owner Sentencing Set for January

A local business owner who has pleaded guilty to fraud will be sentenced in January. Burt Beard, one of the owners of Beard’s Decorating Center, admitted to writing checks to himself from an account belonging to a University of Missouri fraternity. Beard pleaded guilty in September to one count of bank fraud in U.S. District Court in Jefferson City. He wrote close to $400,000 in checks to himself while acting as a volunteer treasurer from 2008-2014 for the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. Beard says he regrets his conduct and takes full responsibility. He faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison, a fine up to $1 million, an order of restitution and supervised released.