Christopher Hayes, 49, of Middletown, R.I., a former Newport, R.I., Police Department Sergeant and President of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), Newport Lodge No. 8, was sentenced today to a total sentence of 12 months, 6 months imprisonment followed by 6 months of home confinement, for using FOP funds for personal use according to Rhode Island’s U.S. Attorney’s Office.

At sentencing, U.S. District Court Chief Judge William E. Smith also ordered Hayes to serve 3 years supervised release upon completion of his term of incarceration; pay $71,523 restitution to the FOP; and perform a total of 300 hours of community service during his term of supervised release. The U.S. Sentencing Guidelines range in this matter is 12-18 month. The government recommended the court impose a sentence of 12 months in prison.

Hayes pleaded guilty on May 1, 2017, to wire fraud. At the time of his guilty plea, Hayes admitted to the court that between August 2009 and December 2014, he used an FOP debit card to pay for his own personal expenses; wrote checks payable to himself from the FOP bank account; withdrew cash from the FOP bank account for personal use; and made online payments to his personal credit card from the FOP bank account.

An investigation by the United States Attorney’s Office, U.S. Department of Labor – Office of Inspector General and Office of Labor Management Standards, and the Rhode Island State Police determined that Hayes fraudulently converted approximately $71,523 in FOP funds for his own personal use.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John P. McAdams.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp. Although not the founder or original owner, Belmore has been with What'sUpNewp since its early beginnings in 2012.

Belmore was born in Providence, Rhode Island; grew up and graduated high school in Coventry, Rhode Island; and lived in Newport, Rhode Island for more than ten years. He currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals.

He and his wife, Jen, as well as their two dogs (Aero and June), recently moved to Alexandria, Virginia. Belmore travels back and forth to Newport every couple of weeks to cover events, work on story ideas, to meet with What'sUpNewp's on-the-ground contributors, to visit friends, and to eat as much seafood as possible.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.