EAU CLAIRE — An Eau Claire woman will spend two years on probation for altering checks that were stolen out of a mailbox and then cashing them at a local credit union.
Alesia R. Thornton, 40, 1202 Omaha St., pleaded guilty recently in Eau Claire County Court to two felony counts of uttering a forgery.
A third count of uttering a forgery and two felony counts of fraud against a financial institution were dismissed but considered at sentencing.
Judge Jon Theisen fined Thornton $1,046.
As conditions of probation, Theisen ordered Thornton to pay $50 a month toward restitution and undergo any recommended programming or treatment.
Thornton also cannot have contact with RCU or the mail theft victims.
According to the criminal complaint:
An Eau Claire couple contacted police on Sept. 3 about potential fraud.
They had put personal checks in their mailbox the day before to pay bills, but those had apparently been intercepted and altered.
Royal Credit Union contacted the couple after Thornton had already cashed one check for $610 and unsuccessfully attempted to use the other to get $1,400.
A credit union teller told police investigators that the second check “looked terrible” and appeared to be forged, at which point the account holders were contacted.
A detective later examined the checks and found they had clearly been forged to change the amount and recipient on them.
Police reviewed security camera footage from both transactions and identified Thornton as the person cashing the checks.
In the second transaction, an unidentified blonde woman is driving to the drive-up teller window with Thornton as her passenger.
When police spoke with Thornton, she admitted to cashing the checks, but said she got them from the blonde woman.
RCU refunded the couple for the $610 from the check that did get cashed.