Farmer sentenced to 27 months in prison

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Former Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer has been sentenced to 27 months in prison.

Farmer pleaded guilty to several charges for misusing state funds. Farmer has requested to serve his sentence at a prison in his hometown of Manchester. But Farmer will be free until March 18. That's when he must report to wherever the Bureau of Prisons decides he will serve his sentence.

The former Kentucky basketball star pleaded guilty in September to two counts of misappropriating government resources while overseeing the agriculture department.

Last week, Farmer's attorney asked for a shorter sentence of 21 months.

Tuesday was Farmer's first time speaking in public since he pleaded guilty last September to two counts of government corruption.

"I want to say to the people of that state how sorry that I am, and how much they have meant to me and thank them for all the understanding," Farmer said.

Farmer will begin serving his sentence in mid-March. He also must pay $120,500 in restitution.

"It doesn't matter who you are, what you've done in your sports career, what your celebrity status is or what position you have in state government. If you abuse the public's trust then we'll follow the evidence and you will be held accountable," said Ken Taylor, with the U.S. Attorney's Office.

"You make bad decisions, poor judgments, and you own up to those mistakes and you move on, and that's what I would hope that the people of the state would be willing to do," Farmer continued.

Farmer will be back in court Friday for sentencing for his Franklin County charges.

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