A city man is out several thousands of dollars after a homeless woman he had allowed to move in with him during the Christmas season ended up allegedly stealing from him, according to city police Agent Ronald A. Bachman.
Renata Layhala McKee, 33, of 600 Green St., was arrested this week on stealing $9,000 from John Masten's checking account after stealing and forging 16 of his checks, Bachman said.
The checks were cashed between mid-December and early March, and investigators believe McKee stole them while she was staying at Masten's home at 923 Campbell St. because she was homeless at the time, Bachman said.
During her stay, "there came a time when Masten suspected that McKee was using drugs and she was asked to leave," Bachman said in an affidavit,
Soon after McKee left, Masten discovered several of his checks had been stolen and forged, Bachman said.
Masten also soon learned that McKee allegedly misused his debit card when he loaned it to her two days before Christmas so she could take her four children bowling for the day, Bachman said.
McKee is accused of illegally using Masten's card to make $160 worth of purchases at Burlington Coat Factory at the Lycoming Mall and for $79 worth of purchases at a Family Dollar outlet. She also used the card to wire $329 via Western Union, Bachman alleged.
"This is McKee's third arrest for access device fraud. The two previous arrests were for stealing credit card information while being employed by two separate companies," Bachman said.
McKee was arraigned Tuesday before District Judge Allen P. Page III on 16 felony counts of forgery and four misdemeanor counts of access device fraud. She was committed to the Lycoming County Prison in lieu of $25,000 bail.