By Jon King /

An embezzlement charge brought against a former cheerleading coach from Howell Public Schools is heading to trial later this year after a plea offer was turned down.

35-year-old Alisha Beaton of Fowlerville is charged with embezzlement between $1,000 and $20,000 by an agent or trustee. In court Friday, Beaton’s attorney stated that despite an offer from the Livingston County Prosecutor’s office to reduce the felony to a misdemeanor charge, his client remained adamant she did not commit the crime. A trial date was then set for September 13th.

Beaton was the head coach of the middle school cheer program for Howell Public Schools. She was also on the Livingston County Area Cheer & Pom Commissioners Board and Director of Cheer & Pom for Howell Area Junior Football.

HPS Spokesman Tom Gould has said that the district’s athletic department knew that money was being collected by the coach for team costs, but that money was not being deposited, causing them to investigate. Court records list the date of the offense as October 9, 2019. Gould said the district has recovered some of the missing funds, but their inventory shows that they are still owed approximately $3,000.

If convicted of the felony charge, Beaton could face up to 5 years in prison and a fine of $10,000 or 3-times the amount embezzled, whichever is greater.