Homestead - South Dade

Ex-Homestead mayor gets probation in campaign spending case

Ex-Homestead Mayor Steven Bateman walking out of the courtroom late last year.
Ex-Homestead Mayor Steven Bateman walking out of the courtroom late last year. MIAMI HERALD STAFF

Former Homestead Mayor Steve Bateman, already facing prison time on a corruption conviction, agreed to probation on additional allegations that he misspent campaign donations.

Bateman on Thursday pleaded no contest to three misdemeanor counts of unlawfully disposing of campaign funds.

He agreed to serve 18 months of probation and was granted a “withhold of adjudication,” meaning no conviction will appear on his record.

Prosecutors had alleged that Bateman illegally spent over $2,000 in campaign money after his reelection in 2011.

The misdemeanor case was always a minor sideshow to Bateman’s other legal woes.

The plea deal comes three months after another judge sentenced Bateman to 22 months in prison in an unrelated corruption case. Jurors convicted Bateman of illegally wielding his influence as mayor while secretly on the payroll of a healthcare company needing government clearance to build a clinic in Homestead.

He was convicted of felony illegal compensation. A judge threw out a second conviction on the same charge, a decision prosecutors are appealing.

Bateman, 59, has yet to begin his prison term — he is free on bail as defense lawyers appeal his conviction.

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