- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 28, 2015

July 28—An East Toledo couple admitted Monday that they took and spent nearly $85,000 from the home of an older couple.

Jamie Jones, 32, and her husband, Joseph Jones, 53, both of 106 Navarre Ave., pleaded guilty to a second-degree felony charge of theft from the elderly before Lucas County Common Pleas Judge Dean Mandros. Each faces up to eight years in prison when they are sentenced Sept. 14.

Charles McDonald, an assistant county prosecutor, told the court that as part of a plea deal, the charge was reduced from a first-degree felony and that the couple had agreed to pay $84,897 in restitution to the victim.

After the hearing, Mr. McDonald said Jamie Jones was employed as a home health aide in late 2013 and early 2014 when she was directed to clean an older couple’s house because of a bed bug infestation. The couple had been moved to a nursing home, and the husband since has died.

Mr. McDonald said that while she was cleaning, she found “a significant amount of cash hidden literally throughout the house — above curtains, below floor boards, in pockets of clothing, and just about everywhere else somebody could hide money.”

She put the cash in garbage bags and took it home, Mr. McDonald said. She and her husband then spent the money on vehicles, including all-terrain vehicles and used tow trucks, and two properties on Navarre Avenue.

“This was a crime of opportunity,” he said. “The defendant literally walked into a house full of cash and simply couldn’t resist taking it.”

Although it was reported to police that the amount stolen might have been close to $300,000, Mr. McDonald said statements about the loss conflicted and because all the transactions were made with cash, authorities had no way to track them.

“It’s likely impossible to determine mathematically exactly how much money was in fact stolen, however the state can prove in excess of $80,000 was spent and that is the amount they’ve agreed to pay back,” he said.

In court, Jamie Jones pleaded guilty, saying she was doing so “because I’m sorry for what happened and I want to make it right.”

Her husband also entered a guilty plea but told the court he didn’t commit the offense. After Judge Mandros explained that anyone who aids and abets the person who committed the crime is guilty of complicity, Joseph Jones said he had done that.

Contact Jennifer Feehan at: [email protected] or 419-213-2134.


(c)2015 The Blade (Toledo, Ohio)

Visit The Blade (Toledo, Ohio) at www.toledoblade.com

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