Undersheriff's Accuser Faces Prison Time After Plea


 The woman who accused Jefferson County Undersheriff Andrew Neff of sending her unwanted, sexual text messages pleaded guilty Friday to crimes that will send her to state prison.

Michele Bowens, 42, of Adams Center, pleaded guilty Friday to attempted forgery, second degree and fourth degree possession of stolen property.

Bowens admitted in Jefferson County court to forging receipts to get refunds from a restaurant, and to having a stolen credit card.

Bowens has already served time in prison, and is expected to be sentenced to up to three years in state prison when she is sentenced.

Bowens filed a $1 million notice of claim in October.

She claims Neff told her "if she performed sexual favors for him, he would speak to the Jefferson County District Attorney's office on her behalf" about the charges Bowens faced.

The notice of claim states Neff "engaged in a pattern of verbal harassment...when she refused to meet him to perform sexual favors."

Bowens claimed in court papers she had a relationship with Neff dating back several years that ended, and that he attempted to restart it in the fall of 2012.

Neff has not worked as undersheriff since late October and was expected to retire this month.

See our report on Bowens' accusations here.

Friday, December 2, 2016
, Watertown, NY

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