A former Layton businessman was given a suspended prison sentence and ordered to spend at least three months in the Davis County Jail on a charge of writing bad checks.

Judge Douglas L Cornaby ordered Rory S. Dean, 30, now living in West Valley, to spend at least three months in the county jail and pay $17,500 restitution on the checks he wrote while his Sofa City business in Layton was failing last summer.The judge, reading from an Adult Probation and Parole pre-sentence report, noted Dean was also the subject of a narcotics investigation in Davis County and, although enough evidence was gathered against him by the county's drug strike force, no charges were filed.

Dean denied being involved in a cocaine transaction, saying he only referred an employee wanting cocaine to someone else who could sell it.

"You've become a promoter, using a line of bull to cover illegal and improper behavior. You can't do that under the pretense of running a business," the judge told Dean.

Dean said his furniture sales firm last summer expanded into furniture manufacturing, but while he was absent for several weeks tending to personal affairs, his business suffered a crisis.

A company that owed him $14,000 declared bankruptcy, Dean told the judge, which caused checks written by an employee to bounce and eventually dragged his own business into bankruptcy.

The judge sentenced Dean to zero to five years in the state prison on the third-degree felony charge, then stayed the prison term and ordered him to spend six months in the county jail. Dean can transfer to a halfway house after three months, the judge ruled, fining him $2,500 in addition to the restitution order.