Jessica Carde, 58, allegedly duped at least seven homeowners in the Seattle area in the last five years into letting her move into their homes, all valued more than $1 million. She allegedly used the same scam each time: Posing as a wealthy single woman, Carde would present a fraudulent document showing she had access to a significant line of credit and wanted to buy the home, but her identity had been stolen, preventing her from writing the check right away. She would then ask the owners to sign a rent-to-buy agreement -- which prosecutors say she had no intention of honoring -- while her identity theft problem was sorted out.
SeattlePI.com said Sunday in one instance she allegedly conned one of the homeowners into loaning her $140,000, which prosecutors said she used to keep up appearances she was wealthy.
She told perspective sellers she was a life coach and "neurobiofeedback" technician, and when the man who loaned her $140,000 suffered a stroke, she allegedly pretended to "cure" him with electrodes to the brain. The man's family became suspicious and called police. When confronted, Carde told nurses at the man's nursing home his wife was trying to kill him and tried to convince the man to sign over power of attorney to her.
Carde, who remains at large, was charged last Monday with four counts of first-degree theft, three counts of mortgage fraud, two counts of securities fraud, two counts of second-degree theft and one count of attempted first-degree theft.
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