Crime

Embezzlement case delayed until October

The trial for a former Franklin County official accused of embezzling at least $1.8 million in public funds was delayed two months.

Defense attorney John Jensen asked for more time to review the "extensive" number of documents in the case against Dennis Huston.

Huston, 65, is charged in Franklin County Superior Court with first-degree theft, money laundering and possession of cocaine. His trial, which had been tentatively set for Aug. 8, was continued Tuesday to Oct. 17.

Assistant Attorney General Scott Marlow, who is prosecuting the case for the county, did not object to the additional time. He noted that they're still waiting for a report from the state auditor's office that is expected to be completed soon.

Huston, the county's former Public Works accounting and administrative director, is accused of stealing money from the county to support his cocaine and gambling habits. Huston allegedly started his theft scheme in 1990, less than a year after being hired.

Officials suspect he embezzled more than $2.8 million from the county since 1996, but the charges filed by the state Attorney General's Office account for the "conservative minimum" of $1.8 million.

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