RICHLANDS, Va. — A husband and wife, who headed a popular youth sports program, have been indicted for taking money from the program.

James Roy Pierce Shelton and his wife Ashley Renee Shelton were indicted by a Tazewell County grand jury July 9 on charges of conspiracy and embezzlement.   Both are felony charges and stem from activity that took place between May 15, 2017, and Feb. 1 of this year.

The two were officers of the Tornado Wrestling Club and handled funds raised by the organization.  An investigation by the Richlands Police Department revealed the two had diverted funds meant for use by the wrestling team to their personal use.

Richlands Police Chief J.W. Gilbert said a citizen came to his department with concerns that the club did a lot of fund raisers but always seemed to be in need of money.  He said an investigation showed more than $10,000 taken in by the program that was used for purchases of items that did not have anything to do with the wrestling team.

The Sheltons appeared before a magistrate July 16 and were released on bond.  They are scheduled for a circuit court appearance Friday.

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