Sunday, June 12, 2016

Section 8 Tenant Gets Five Years In State Prison For Swindling Local Housing Authority By Pocketing Benefits From Rent Subsidy Vouchers For Two Different Apartments While Living With Landlord/Boyfriend In A Third

In Missoula, Montana, the Missoulian reports:
  • Christy Ann Cummings sank to the floor crying [] when District Court Judge James Manley sentenced her to five years in the Department of Corrections with no time suspended.

    “I can’t go to jail,” she yelled, resisting as bailiffs grabbed her by the arms and took her out of the courtroom.

    In March, Cummings was convicted by a jury of felony theft for defrauding Missoula Housing Authority by receiving vouchers she used to pay rent at two different apartments while she lived at a third location with her boyfriend.

    According to a court affidavit, Cummings, 36, received Housing Choice Voucher payments through the Section 8 program for a pair of residences, [...].

    In 2014, Cummings told a judge she had been living at another address with her boyfriend Joshua Patterson since July 2012. In early May, Patterson – who was the landlord at one of the properties Cummings was receiving vouchers for that was allegedly actually being rented to her brother – was charged with felony theft by deception for defrauding Missoula Housing Authority.

    During Cummings’ sentencing [], senior deputy county attorney Karla Painter requested Manley designate her a persistent felony offender, which carried a mandatory minimum of at least a five year sentence, due to a prior felony DUI from 2010. Cummings also was convicted of theft and forgery in 2002. Painter recommended the sentence for her latest theft conviction be for 15 years with 10 years suspended.

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