2×4’s For Hope Founder’s Theft Trial Set For July

By Benjamin Cox on April 7, 2023 at 8:40am

The trial for the co-founder of a non-profit that builds tiny homes for military veterans has been set for this summer.

Muddy River News reports that Adams County Judge Robert Adrian set a July 10th jury trial for Mark Lawrence, who appeared yesterday morning in Adams County Circuit Court.

The 63-year old Lawrence has been charged with Class 1 felony theft over $100,000 and Class 2 felony theft over $10,000 for allegedly selling donated tools from the Milwaukee Electric Tool Corporation to Jacksonville and Galesburg Warehouse Bargains stores and keeping the money. The tools were donated to Lawrence’s non-profit 2×4’s for Hope, which builds homes for at-risk veterans. Lawrence’s indictment also says that he wrote multiple checks from 2×4’s for Hope to his personal business Lawrence Construction for several thousands of dollars.

The 2x4s for Hope board also filed a civil suit against Lawrence and his wife Chris Lawrence, the former treasurer of the organization. A temporary restraining order for the organization has also been granted against the Lawrences to keep them away from the groups property and finances.

Mark Lawrence has pleaded not guilty to the charges and the case has gone through a series of continuances since Lawrence’s indictment last summer.