Former official pleads guilty to charges

UNION - A former public official in a county reeling from scandal has pleaded guilty to federal charges.

Media outlets report that former Union County supervisor Donnie Betenbaugh pleaded guilty on Tuesday to soliciting and extortion after reaching a deal with prosecutors.

Betenbaugh was one of several Union officials arrested in October on federal charges ranging from money laundering to accepting thousands in kickbacks.

He will be sentenced later. Prosecutors have recommended Betenbaugh serve five months in prison.

Union's former mayor and zoning administrator have served federal prison time for bribes. Former Sheriff Howard Wells has pleaded guilty to lying to agents about money he loaned in exchange for interest he didn't report as taxable income.

- The Associated Press