An Alger woman who stole thousands of dollars by making forged checks with a computer program was sentenced to 5 1/2 years in prison Thursday, Jan. 3.
Ladonna Marie Osborn, 44, burst into tears in Whatcom County Superior Court after Judge Ira Uhrig handed down the prison term.
Osborn pleaded guilty in December to two dozen felonies - numerous counts of theft and forgery, and several counts of bail jumping - on the understanding she would serve a drug offender sentencing alternative and spend half of her time on probation, outside of prison.
Instead, she was rejected from the program after a brief background check pulled up a 2004 vehicular homicide case.
The latest convictions resolve three separate court cases.
? In spring 2011, Osborn was homeless and asked to use an old boyfriend's bathroom, according to court records. He had a no-contact order against her but let her in anyway. Before leaving, she stole his debit and Visa card.
? A few months later, she stole checks from her aunt, forged signatures and cashed them for a few hundred dollars each.
? In September 2012, prosecutors charged Osborn with using a stolen check from a local cedar shakes and shingles company as a template for more counterfeit checks. She made them with a computer program. Court records show she passed the forged checks - worth up to $1,780 - at banks in Bellingham and Burlington. Security footage from the Peoples Bank at the Barkley Haggen clearly showed Osborn cashing one of the forgeries.
She missed several court dates in the meantime.
Later, detectives found more bogus checks Osborn cashed, according to charging documents. They mimicked business checks from the Mt. Baker Ski Area. In all, those thefts amounted to $1,900.
She confessed to detectives in jail "because she was tired of running from her problems and wanted to be truthful about the crimes she committed," according to court records. She added that she was "messed up" on drugs when she did it, and didn't care how she got the money to support her habit.
Reach CALEB HUTTON at email@example.com or call 715-2276.