Wednesday, July 16, 2003

FBI, police arrest con artist suspect Stanley in Virginia

By Sheila McLaughlin
The Cincinnati Enquirer

A suspected con artist who has eluded police in at least 16 states for six years was captured in Virginia late Monday, days after police said she abducted her 5-year-old son from foster care.

But authorities don't know when Lottie Mae Stanley will be returned to Hamilton County to answer a grand jury indictment last week for bank fraud, theft and forgery.

Officers around the country - part of a network that had been tracking Stanley since 1997 - were celebrating Tuesday.

"I was elated. I knew it was getting close," said Detective Lynn Weddle of Topeka (Kan.) Police, who spent her morning e-mailing officers around the country.

Virginia State Police and FBI agents swooped down on the Howard Johnson motel in Madison Heights, Va., about 10 p.m. Monday after receiving information that Stanley was staying there.

They found Stanley with her husband, Aaron Telke, their 5-year-old son and a 7-year-old boy believed to be Stanley's grandson, FBI Agent Zack Lowe said. He said Stanley and Telke were taken into custody without incident. She was jailed in Virginia pending extradition to Missouri, where she is wanted for bank fraud.

State, local and federal authorities in Virginia had stepped up their search for Stanley last Thursday after she took her son, Aaron, from the home of his uncle in Halifax, Va.

The child was one of four children who had been placed in the custody of Warren County Children's Services in January when sheriff's deputies broke up an alleged theft ring they said Stanley led out of a Deerfield Township apartment.

Authorities said two of Stanley's children and two of her grandchildren were at a relative's house in Halifax after a Warren County judge granted out-of-state visitation last week. It is unclear whether charges will be filed involving that incident.

Stanley, a 51-year-old mother of 12 accused of stealing identities and bank account information to steal about $500,000 - had called the Enquirer to say she had the 5-year-old boy, but that a relative had turned him over to her.

She said her children and grandchildren - all wards of Warren County Children's Services - had been staying with her 24-year-old son and his girlfriend.

Patti Jacobs, spokeswoman for Children's Services, said the 5-year-old boy will be returned here to foster care. The other children returned to the Tristate over the weekend.

Telke, who was indicted along with his wife in Hamilton County last week, is jailed in Lynchburg, Va. He is awaiting extradition to Cincinnati, where he is charged with tampering with records, identity fraud and forgery.

Stanley's daughter and son-in-law, Nettie and Eddie Williams, were indicted in Hamilton County on similar charges, but remained at large Tuesday.


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