Former Cape cop gets 24 months in prison
A former Cape Coral police detective received 24 months in federal prison Tuesday for charges connected to a $4.2 million mortgage fraud conspiracy.
Stephen Petrovich, 35, of Cape Coral was sentenced to 24 months for one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and wire fraud and 24 months for one count of money laundering by U.S. District Judge Charlene Honeywell. He had pleaded guilty in March to both charges in a deal with U.S. prosecutors.
The sentences will run concurrently, according to the U.S. Clerk’s Office.
Honeywell also sentenced Petrovich, whose father is retired Cape Coral Police Chief Rob Petrovich, to 24 months of supervised release for each count. Those sentences also will run concurrently.
“We respect what the judge concluded, and beyond that, we really don’t comment,” Steve Cole, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, said.
Attorney Charles Michael Harris, who represented Petrovich, did not return telephone messages left Tuesday seeking comment.
Petrovich is the third person to be sentenced in connection to the mortgage fraud scheme on the same two counts. Steven Reese, 32, of Cape Coral was
sentenced June 21 to 18 months for each charge, and then Ryan O’Brien, 34, of Cape Coral was sentenced June 28 to 15 months for each count.
Honeywell ordered their sentences to run concurrently as well.
Reese and O’Brien received sentences below where the guideline scored them or what the U.S. Attorney’s Office was seeking. Prosecutors sought 31-37 months per charge for O’Brien; Reese was scored at 37-46 months for each.
Cole did not have the sentencing terms sought by prosecutors for Petrovich on hand Tuesday, but he explained that the final decision is solely the judge’s.
“Our job is to prosecute the cases and the judge makes the decision on sentencing,” he said. “That’s the way the system works.”
According to court documents, Petrovich took part in a “cash-out” mortgage fraud conspiracy with a group of individuals. The scheme took place from 2007-08 and involved eight Cape properties. The group reported “inflated sales prices to lenders and falsified applications for loans based on the higher prices, then pocketed the excess loan proceeds at closing.”
The others accused in the mortgage fraud conspiracy are:
— Tyler Forrey, 28, of Cape Coral
— Troy Bossert, 32, of San Antonio, Texas
— James J. O’Brien, a former CCPD sergeant
Forrey and Bossert are each facing the same two counts as the others — one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and wire fraud and one count of money laundering. James J. O’Brien is facing one count of loan and credit application fraud. All three have pleaded guilty in deals with prosecutors.
Forrey has a sentencing scheduled for July 26, and James J. O’Brien is set for Aug. 9. Bossert’s sentencing is scheduled for July 19, but a motion to continue was filed. The judge had not ruled on that motion as of Tuesday.
According to court documents, the charges of one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and wire fraud and one count of money laundering carry a maximum sentence of 30 years in federal prison, while one count of loan and credit application fraud carries a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison.