Theft charges to be filed against former 509 Fitness owner - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Theft charges to be filed against former 509 Fitness owner

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KENNEWICK, Wash. -- Last March, several hundred Kennewick gym members were shocked to learn 509 Fitness shut it's doors without warning.

One of 509 Fitness owners , Jason sSeater promised them a refund  in a NBC Right Interview, but many of the members called the news station to say they never got one.

Friday,  the Benton County Prosecutor's Office notified NBC Right Now they will be charging Sleater with first degree theft, a felony.

They say Sleater unlawfully charged about 375 members of 509 Fitness a gym enhancement fee of $19.60 in February and March of 2011.

Several former members were glad to hear the news.

"I'm kind of glad Kennewick was able to get something done with that. that's just bad business to do that to people," says Chris Boyd, a former member.

"To take people to the cleaners regardless of the price.  $20 isn't much, its just the principal," says Steve Hackney, who worked out at the facility for 15 years, even before it was 509 Fitness.

The prosecutor's office says the enhancement fees added up to $7,350 dollars. Sleater's arraignment is set for January 19th.  If convicted a judge will likely order restitution for the money owed to members.  Prosecutors say  the standard sentence for first degree theft is anywhere from zero to 90 days in jail.