Prominent Medford businessman gets probation in plea deal

MEDFORD, Ore. — A well-known Medford businessman accused of identity theft and forgery won’t spend time behind bars after reaching a plea deal with prosecutors.

Louis Mahar, former co-owner of the now-dissolved Mahar Brothers Construction, pleaded no contest to forgery in the second degree Monday afternoon, the plea is effectively the same as a guilty plea but doesn’t require a defendant to admit fault. Mahar was originally charged with two felony counts of identity theft and forgery. His estranged wife, Jessica Mahar, said he forged her signature on the couple’s amended tax return and kept the return without her knowledge.

When the case went to trial in July, one of their two daughters testified that she saw a deposit of over $20,000 in her parent’s joint bank account, saying it was withdrawn a few days later. The judge ruled last summer’s trial a mistrial and unlawful verdict after the jury came back evenly split six to six.

Monday Mahar pleaded no contest to forgery, a misdemeanor. In return, the two felony charges were dropped. Mahar’s attorney said Jessica Mahar has already been paid her half of the tax refunds. Mahar will pay just under $3,500 in restitution.

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