Chase Tate death: Brother avoids jail over plaque fraud
A man who stole £950 of donations for a plaque in memory of his brother has avoided a jail term.
Ford North, 26, admitted taking cash from a fund he set up in the wake of Chase Tate's death in 2017.
Mr Tate, 23, died in a hit-and-run on the A1104 near Ulceby Cross in Lincolnshire on 7 January.
At Lincoln Crown Court, North, of Chauntry Road, Alford, Lincolnshire, was given an eight-month sentence, suspended for 18 months.
He pleaded guilty at a previous hearing to theft and two counts of fraud.
The court heard North accepted donations of £50 and £900 from two friends after saying he was raising funds for a memorial plaque at the scene of his brother's death.
North denied he had made any financial gain for himself during a police interview and claimed he had been "set up".
Sentencing North, Judge Simon Hirst told him: "This was mean offending, your friends gave you money for your brother.
"I imagine the money you collected fell to temptation."
Dharmendra Toor, representing North, said the defendant was in poor health due to arthritis and epilepsy.
He told the court: "This was born out of a relapse with alcohol and drugs, he relapsed because of the death of his brother."
Speaking outside court, North apologised for what he had done and said he had made "a genuine mistake".
It is thought Mr Tate was walking on the road towards Ulceby Cross from Alford at around 05:00 when he was struck and killed by a vehicle.
Two people were arrested in 2017 in relation to the death, however no action has been taken.