Former Tempe High security guard sentenced for stealing from school

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Kimmie Dwayne Baker By Catherine Holland Kimmie Dwayne Baker By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX -- A former Tempe High School security guard was sentenced to 90 days in the county jail and three years of probation Friday.

Kim Dwayne Baker, a guard for the school for 19 years, was convicted in August of stealing $1000 from a locked closet inside the school. A key to the closet was found inside a bible at Baker’s home.

Baker has maintained his innocence throughout the trial, and today’s sentencing hearing was no exception.

“I did not commit this crime,” Baker told Judge Edward Bassett.

Baker, acting as his own attorney, called a parade of preachers and other character witnesses to testify on his behalf, and also painted a picture of a corrupt justice system. Baker accused both the prosecutor and the judge of impropriety, filing formal complaints against both.

Baker also referenced the case of Jhesse Shockley, the Glendale girl missing for more than a year.

"Tempe police had this lead that the baby’s body would be found in the landfill, but using Jhesse Shockley’s body and disappearance Tempe needed to get out in that landfill, because they were going to slam Kim Baker,” said Baker.

Witnesses for the prosecution talked about the low morale at the school as a result of the trial.

“When the trial started it created a shadow over our school,” said one witness representing the school. ”It was definitely a negative distraction to what could have been an exciting new school year.”

Phone calls to the Tempe Unified School District seeking comment were not immediately returned Friday.

Baker was also ordered to pay restitution. He says he will appeal his conviction.