Department store scammers plead guilty

Three of four people arrested July 20 for scheming to steal money and clothing from the South Carson Mervyn's were given suspended sentences Tuesday after pleading guilty to reduced charges.

Tia Heflin, 24, Ryan Wilson, 22, and Vincent Tablet, 20, were placed on probation by Carson City Justice Court Judge Robey Willis after pleading guilty to misdemeanor theft.

They were previously charged with felony theft and embezzlement. The charges were reduced as part of a plea agreement.

In addition to a suspended 60-day jail sentence, they each agreed to perform 80 hours of community service and pay restitution.

A fourth defendant, 32-year-old Kimberly Esenarro, didn't appear in court because of a medical problem. A new court date will be set when her condition improves. She is charged with felony embezzlement and is free on $15,000 bail.

The arrests were made when a Mervyn's security guard caught Tablet attempting to redeem a cash voucher fraudulently made by Wilson, a store employee. It was reportedly valued at $450 dollars. In a separate exchange, Heflin admitted receiving a voucher from Esenarro, who also worked at the store. Esenarro reportedly made the voucher by scanning a phony return on a price tag from some luggage.

Tablet and Wilson were ordered to pay restitution to Mervyn's of an amount between $1,100 and $1,550. The amount is in dispute. Tablet was also ordered to pay $340 to the store for a bad check.

At the sentencing, Willis made it clear that consumers are victimized by theft. "If people keep stealing from stores, then the stores have to raise their prices to cover their losses," he said.


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