Dawn Saugen, the former PTA treasurer convicted of embezzling more than $35,000 from the Vargas School Parent Teacher Association, was sentenced Wednesday to eight months in county jail and three years of probation.

Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Kurt Kumli also ordered Saugen to seek psychological counseling and to refrain from any paid or volunteer work involving financial matters, according to Deputy District Attorney Paola Estanislao.

"It's the best thing that we could ask for," said Maria Dulay, the former PTA president who discovered the thefts.

Saugen's attorney, Jerome Mullins, had sought only probation for his client. As part of the deal, a forgery charge was dropped and Saugen agreed to pay the Sunnyvale school PTA restitution, which was set Wednesday at $37,345.72 .

Mullins did not respond to requests for comment.

From last summer through January, Saugen used PTA funds to purchase gift cards from popular retailers such as Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, Target and Nordstrom.

Saugen, 38, was ordered to begin her jail sentence Jan. 2. With credit for good behavior, she could be released after four months.

-- Sharon Noguchi, staff



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