By Jon King /

Sentencing has been handed down to a man who admitted to cashing fraudulent bottle return slips worth nearly $1,000.

40-year old Eric Lowman of Oceola Township was charged last year, along with 38-year old Shane Whiteman of New Hudson, of carrying out a scheme involving cashing fake bottle return slips on several occasions at the Fowlerville Walmart. In August, Lowman entered a plea deal with prosecutors, waiving his trial by jury and pleading guilty to all 3 charges against him; two counts of uttering and publishing and one count of false pretenses. In exchange, prosecutors agreed to reduce his habitual offender status and a 1-year jail cap.

In court today, Livingston County Circuit Judge Suzanne Geddis sentenced Lowman to a year of probation, with the first 30 days to be served behind bars. He was ordered to turn himself in to the Livingston County Jail by 9am Friday. He was also ordered to pay full restitution.

Whiteman earlier pleaded guilty to the seven counts of uttering and publishing as part of a plea deal with prosecutors, who agreed to dismiss a count of conducting a criminal enterprise.