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Oregon woman gets rehab for multi-state credit card scamming

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A Pendleton woman was sentenced to residential drug abuse treatment Monday in Walla Walla County Superior Court in two cases including multiple fraud and theft charges totaling tens of thousands of dollars in multiple states.

Alea D. Henderson, 31, originally was charged in the second case with second-degree theft, second-degree organized retail theft, first-degree attempted theft, three counts of third-degree theft, two counts of attempted vehicle theft and second-degree attempted theft.

She made an agreement, however, with prosecutors and pleaded guilty Jan. 17 to five counts of second-degree theft. The first case’s charge remained as it was — second-degree theft.

The second case stemmed from Henderson using or trying to use her deactivated Blaze credit card in 2019 at Walla Walla stores including Marla June’s Clothing Co., Vape ‘N Goods, Lost Boardroom, Apex Food & Deli, Macy’s, Walla Walla Saw LLC, Tommy’s 9th Street Auto Sales Inc. and Inland Octopus, records stated.

In the first, she allegedly stole $2,535 in merchandise from Walla Walla Pawn Shop, records stated.

In the second, she allegedly purchased or attempted purchasing, in about 65 instances, $66,542 worth of items in Washington, Oregon and Idaho, records stated. In both cases, she allegedly entered a code to override the card being declined at stores, which initially worked. Later code stopped working.

Her co-defendant in this case, Marky L. Hill, 24, of Milton-Freewater, has a warrant for her arrest after appearing on Dec. 30, 2019. Her charges are two counts of defrauding an innkeeper, second-degree organized retail theft and third-degree theft.

Henderson also allegedly filled out paperwork with her address listed at stores to be exempt from sales tax, records stated.

On Monday, Judge John Lohrmann commented on how her actions impacted others.

“I can’t tell you how personally intrusive it is to be ripped off with this kind of theft,” he said. “At the same time, I realize it’s motivated by drug addiction, and I want to give you the tools to overcome it.”

Henderson’s sentence included six months of residential Drug Offender Sentencing Alternative and 24 months of community custody for each count in both cases, running concurrently with each other; $600 in fines and fees in the first case, and $500 in the second; as well as $1,135 in restitution for the first, and to-be-determined restitution for the second.

Emily Thornton can be reached at emilythornton@wwub.com or 509-526-8325.

Emily Thornton covers courts and emergency services, as well as other various stories. She has been in the newspaper industry off and on since roughly 1999 and lived primarily on the West Coast, but also Florida and Europe.