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Man pleads not guilty to computer access with confidential data charge

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A 49-year-old Hermosa man pleaded not guilty to two charges dealing with the Pennington County Treasurer's Office Friday morning in Pennington County Court.

Judge Jeffrey Connolly accepted the plea from Jason Ford, who served in the U.S. Army for 23 years and appeared with his lawyer Paul Brankin.

According to an amended complaint, Ford faces one count of unlawful use of a computer system with confidential data without consent of the owner and one misdemeanor count, which was not read in court, of using a computer without consent of the owner.

The charges allege Ford unlawfully used the computer system in the Pennington County Treasurer's Office between Jan. 10, 2019 and March 3, 2022.

Connolly said Ford could face up to two years in the state penitentiary for the first charge and two years for the second.

Brankin requested a status hearing and anticipates "voluminous discovery" materials. The next hearing is scheduled for 11 a.m. Oct. 28.

— Contact Siandhara Bonnet at siandhara.bonnet@rapidcityjournal.com

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