BOISE -- Two former city officials embroiled in scandals that cost them their jobs got out of jail Monday.

Former Mayor Brent Coles and former Human Resources Director Tammy Rice were released after fulfilling the pre-conditions for their release.

Both Coles and Rice completed a course in behavior change, paid court costs and wrote letters of apology to the community. Coles paid about $5,000 in restitution, and Rice covered her $118 expense.

Both had been sentenced to six months in jail for their role in the scandal that plagued city hall last year.

Coles pleaded guilty last November and had been serving time since Jan. 19. He pleaded guilty to two felonies after using public funds for pleasure trips, such as a 2002 visit to New York City with the Boise city attorney and her assistant for dinner and a Broadway show.

Rice pleaded guilty last July to using a city credit card to purchase $118 in children's clothes while attending a convention in Las Vegas.

Coles, who has been on work release, appeared at the Ada County Courthouse on his own, dressed in a suit and tie, with his family by his side. After the hearing, he was taken out a rear exit of the courthouse to avoid the media.

Arguing against Cole's release, Deputy Attorney General Scott James said Rice spent three months in jail and Coles spent less than half that time, and he was convicted of more crimes.

Rice appeared in a jail jumpsuit and handcuffs. She returned to the jail after her hearing for processing and later left with her husband.

Both Coles and Rice will be on probation for several years. If Coles completes his probation and his record is cleared, he could be eligible to hold public office again.

Cole's former chief of staff, Gary Lyman, remained at the jail Monday. He is serving 180 days and was also ordered to repay the city $50,000 to cover half of its costs for a special fraud audit for his part in the scandal.

An investigation by the state Attorney General's office indicated that Lyman and Rice were lovers for years during Coles' administration.

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