Janet's Conner

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Friday, May 26, 2006

COUPLE CHARGED IN MILITARY RAFFLE SCAM

As the Memorial Day weekend approaches, a Villa Park, Illinois couple is accused of scamming unsuspecting shoppers who opened their pocketbooks for a bogus relief fund to benefit military families.

Authorities arrested Donald L. McCarver and his fiancee, Anne M. Pellegrini, both 41, during a 6 a.m. Thursday search of their apartment at 324 N. Ardmore Aveunue.

Acting on a tip that the two were running a scam, sheriff's detectives recently approached them outside a Glen Ellyn store at Roosevelt Road and Route 53.

Pellegrini wore a Navy dress uniform. McCarver was seated at a camouflage cloth-covered table while selling raffle tickets and handing out ribbons. The shoppers were told the raffle ends over Memorial Day weekend.

Authorities said the couple insisted when talking with detectives that they were military personnel and that the charity was legitimate. Detectives checked out their story, though. Police said neither was active in the service and that the charity, Navy/Marines Family Relief Fundraiser, did not exist.

DuPage State's Attorney Joseph Birkett and Sheriff John Zaruba announced the criminal charges Thursday, calling the couple's actions a "disgrace" and "deplorable."

McCarver and Pellegrini are accused of setting up a table outside grocery and discount shopping stores in the Glen Ellyn and Wheaton areas and selling the raffle tickets at $5 a piece of five for $20.

Investigators still are adding up the raffle tickets to figure out how much money was collected, but the criminal charges allege up to $10,000 was stolen. Authorities said it'll likely about half as much when all is tallied.

McCarver and Pellegrini are charged with felony theft by deception and false implementations of a charity organization. McCarver also faces obstructing justice allegations after being accused of giving investigators a false name and birth date.

They face up to five years in prison but also are eligible for probation. Both remained in the DuPage County jail late Thursday. Pellegrini must post $10,000 cash for her release.

McCarver, though, is being held on three cases, including charges related to the scam. The other cases involve aggrevated home repair fraud and comtempt of court allegations. He must post $33,694 to be released.

Authorities are asking anyone who believes he or she may have made a donation to this fund to call the sheriff's office at (630) 407-2400. It was DuPage County Crime Stoppers that provided the initial tip that led to the arrests.


Source of Information: Daily Herald (Illinois)
Legal Affairs Writer
May 26, 2006

7 Comments:

  • At 11:42 PM, Anonymous tom.manatos@mail.house.gov said…

    Keep it up Democrats like your news

     
  • At 11:47 PM, Anonymous Joe said…

    Janet-Dale John said you two Rock.We Link up to your two sites

     
  • At 11:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey you are you OK? We miss you have a nice Monday

     
  • At 12:46 AM, Anonymous Mama Sue said…

    Its late thank you and Dale for Dale's support on John Leasch on the Daily Kos he made one heck of a statement backing John.We do download your blog once a day.Girl you still got it big time.I never want to be your enemy!

     
  • At 12:52 AM, Anonymous Sgt White Vince Aldo said…

    Sgt. and Vince Sue emailed us your up again WOW don't drink a lot on Monday like we should say a word huh

     
  • At 1:00 AM, Anonymous Peggy Murphy said…

    Hi long time.I left you messages here but they would not post I am working at post 519 as a VSO. Dale helping me like he did made me think how I could help veterans. Girl it was a hard test but I passed it now I help other veterans

     
  • At 1:08 AM, Anonymous Capt Winters said…

    HI from Veterans For Progress New York! Its 2 am here and I have been at it since 5 am what day is it.Well I just wanted to reach out to you and say go get them.We have five vets running here against the Republican ass wipes.I still download your site but it about every two weeks.Don't have much time for doing things I want.Janet we have to get these people out of office before we lose everything.I write when I can Capt Winters

     

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