Feds eye one-hour prison sentence in Birmingham

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - In the time frame it takes for the average customer to develop their pictures at a local drugstore, one Birmingham convict paid her debt to society behind bars, sort of.

Now, federal prosecutors say they're reviewing the one-hour prison sentence handed down by a judge to a former teller for her role in a bank fraud scheme. They won't say if they'll appeal, however.

The former teller, 21-year-old Haley Patterson, was sentenced on Monday and served the time in a holding area in the federal courthouse in Birmingham.

She also was ordered to spend eight months in home detention and pay $41,800 in restitution.

Patterson and two others pleaded guilty earlier this year in the case. Her attorney, Tommy Spina, said Patterson's role was to cash checks withdrawing money from dormant accounts of older people.

Spina says Patterson is grateful for the sentence. A spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance called U.S. District Judge Abdul Kallon's sentencing "unreasonable."

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