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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Charges against DePauw student consolidated

Friday, March 13, 2009

A DePauw student accused of stealing a sorority sister's credit card and running up over $1,000 in charges will now face much less potential jail time if her case goes to trial.

Brittany E. Schmall, 21, of Portage, Mich., was originally charged with one count of Class D felony theft and nine counts of Class D felony fraud -- each charge punishable by up to three years in jail. Putnam County Circuit Court Judge Matthew Headley agreed to a request by Schmall's attorney, Sidney Tongret, to consolidate all the fraud charges into one Class D felony, which means Schmall's maximum possible jail sentence is now six years.

Schmall's trial is set for May 5. A plea agreement could still be reached before that date.

The charges against Schmall stem from alleged unauthorized purchases she made using a credit card belonging to another woman Schmall lived with at the Alpha Chi Omega sorority house on the DePauw University campus.

Schmall allegedly used the card, which was reported stolen on April 13, 2007, to purchase items at several stores and shops in Greencastle and Plainfield between Feb. 2 and March 22, 2007.

Court documents said several of Schmall's sorority sisters were interviewed and told authorities that Schmall had a history of stealing in the sorority house.

Court documents indicate that Schmall was undergoing treatment for depression.

To date, Schmall has spent no time in jail. A warrant for her arrest was issued on Sept. 25, 2007, and she had her initial hearing on Nov. 24, 2008. She entered not guilty pleas to all the charges and was released on her own recognizance.

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Was she black balled from the sorority?

-- Posted by Harmony Church on Fri, Mar 13, 2009, at 4:26 PM

Once again, it seems local government is under pressure to "consolidate" the charges and reduce the embarassment to the University, rather than expedite a criminal proceeding. A local kid without any County political connections would have been behind bars awaiting trial as of April of 2007. And now the poor little rich girl has depression? Nice to know that the unelected DPU board is really running the show in Greencastle, isn't it?

-- Posted by former_pc_res on Sun, Mar 15, 2009, at 11:32 AM

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