A former Merriam Public Works director is sentenced to 18 months probation after agreeing to plead guilty to official misconduct for stealing city gas.
Randy Carroll spoke publicly for the first time about the case at his hearing Thursday.
At first, he declined comment. But when pressed by the judge, Carroll did offer an apology.
"I made a mistake, your honor, and I feel a lot of remorse," he said in court.
In May, Carroll pleaded guilty to felony official misconduct. A second felony theft charge against him was dropped as part of the deal.
Caught multiple times stealing gas by a hidden camera set up by one of his employees, the former Public Works director estimated he stole about 160 gallons of gas over roughly a year.
The camera even captured Carroll urinating on the Public Works shop floor.
"I apologize to the city of Merriam. It was never for personal gain. It was always for the city of Merriam," Carroll told the judge.
But while Carroll admitted he didn't need to take the gas, the judge offered Carroll an excuse.
"You felt that because you were having to drive extra miles in the course of your responsibilities, you felt they should've provided you with additional gas?" the judge asked Carroll.
"Yes, sir. I should've asked for that," Carroll replied.
Court records show the city was paying Carroll $400 a month in car expenses in addition to his salary. Merriam City Administrator Phil Lammers confirmed that fact to the 41 Action News Investigators in May.
"Randy Carroll did get an automobile allowance, which among other things, was expected to pay for fuel," Lammers said.
After Carroll walked out of the courthouse following his sentencing, the 41 Action News Investigators asked Carroll, "Was $400 not enough for you the city was giving you?"
Carroll kept walking and didn't reply.
Carroll was given 18 months probation on a seven-month prison sentence, the minimum allowed under the law because the 61-year-old has no prior criminal record.
As part of the plea deal with prosecutors, Carroll agreed to pay $850 in restitution to the city of Merriam for the gas he stole and for court costs. And he agreed to pay that money within 30 days.
A couple of Merriam Public Works employees who attended the hearing characterized Carroll's sentence as lenient.
Three other people at the hearing said they were there to support Carroll but offered no comment.