47-year-old Kimberley Ross was sentenced today to six years in prison for multiple charges including grand theft, and failure to redeliver leased property. During her sentencing hearing, it came out that Ms. Ross wrote over 230 fradulent checks, stealing over $200,000 in just four years.
Spending the ill-gotten money on furniture, jewelry, food, entertainment and even at an amusement park, experts calculated that Kimberly was living an $80,000 a year lifestyle while only making $40,000.
Kimberly, who was fired in 2011 ans ironically works as a tax preparer for Jackson Hewitt, elected to take her case to trial. It did not go well for her and the state's original prison recommendation of four years soon jumped to six as more details came to light.
Ms. Ross asked the judge to sentence her to probation, paying back to Sanderlin center $1,500 per month while doing community service but the judge rejected that when she brought no money upfront. Before sentencing the lady, Judge Nancy Ley quizzed the defendant as to the history of the Sanderlin center and what it meant to the community.
Who was James B. Sanderlin? the judge asked.
The answer? James Sanderlin was the first African-American judge in circuit court and he the namesake of the nonprofit organization that provides multiple free and reduced cost services to low-income families.