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Former Oak Harbor City Council hopeful goes to jail

A former candidate for Oak Harbor City Council will serve six months in jail for stealing a 100-ounce bar of silver from an elderly family friend, according to court documents.

Melvin J. Vance, 49, was charged in May in Island County Superior Court with trafficking in stolen property in the first degree, theft in the second degree and possession of stolen property in the second degree.

He pleaded guilty and was sentenced Aug. 11. He is scheduled to begin serving his jail sentence Aug. 25.

Vance himself reported the missing silver as a burglary, according to an Island County Sheriff’s report.

There was no sign of forced entry, investigators reported, and the resident said only she, Vance and her late husband had the combination to the safe.

The home belonged to an 87-year-old woman, a longtime family friend of Vance who was out of town caring for an ailing daughter.

The woman who owns the home returned after a few weeks away and reported that a few pieces of jewelry were also missing from her safe in addition to a 100-ounce bar of silver, according to court records.

Investigators reported that Vance pawned a 100-ounce bar of silver at a North Whidbey pawn shop, telling the owner that he needed money for medication.

The silver was worth about $2,000, the report states.

During an interview with a sheriff’s deputy, Vance claimed that his father had given him the silver; his mother and brother, however, denied that was true, according to court documents.

Vance ran three times for a seat on the Oak Harbor City Council.

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