Mike Bertelsen’s days as a public servant are over. He has resigned as Mercer County Treasurer after pleading guilty today to felony theft and official misconduct charges in connection with the misappropriation of $13,000 in county 911 funds. He will be sentenced October 20th and faces anywhere from probation up to 3-to-7 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections. Special Prosecutor Michael Vujovich says he will be seeking a prison term for Bertelsen.
Defense attorney Jack Schwartz says his client has no prior record and deserves probation.
Felony theft charges involving the Mercer County Republican Party have been dismissed, but Bertelsen will pay them $800 in restitution as well as $13,000 to the county. The partial agreement also includes a $10,000 fine. Today’s plea hearing was at Rock Island County Circuit Court, but the October 20th sentencing hearing will be at Mercer County Circuit Court. No other elected Mercer County officials attended today’s hearing.