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Criminal Charges, XLIV: Troubled teens graduate to credit card crime

Jeremy Simon

People of all ages can — and do — commit crimes involving credit cards. However, in honor of recent high school graduations around the country, I’ve put together some items featuring teen card thieves.

This week’s edition of Criminal Charges looks at young adults who have gotten started on a career path of crime, including a bad babysitter, a girl who threw a prescription pizza party and a cross-country car thief.

Babysitter takes family’s credit card, kid on shopping spree
Next time you complain about the babysitter inviting her boyfriend over and eating all your Rocky Road ice cream, just remember that it could be worse. On May 30, a Southampton, N.Y., babysitter was arrested and charged with several felonies after she decided to take the credit card and child from the family she was working for on a shopping spree.

“Village Police said the girl was babysitting for a Pond Lane family on May 23 and stole a credit card,” the Southampton Press reports. “She took the 4-year-old child she was babysitting shopping with her in the village, where she charged $3,129 at a jewelry store with the credit card, according to police.”

According to police, the 17-year-old babysitter then returned to the home and stole four bank checks and $500 cash, later charging purchases at a gas station, Target, Rite-Aid pharmacy and clothing store. She also deposited two checks for $5,200 each into a friend’s account, police say.

“The girl, whom police said is a runaway, was remanded to Suffolk County Jail in lieu of $21,000 bail,” the Southampton Press reports. Guess she hadn’t saved up quite that much in babysitting money.

Teen girl arrested for Xanax pizza party

hoehn.jpgNot since Pizza Hut’s mayonnaise lover’s pie has a pizza combination sounded so wrong.

Apparently, door-to-door saleswoman Danielle Rae Hoehn of Naples, Fla., and her friends decided to order a pizza to go along with the Xanax anxiety medication she already had in her possession.

Unfortunately, they tried to put the pizza on plastic that wasn’t theirs. Deputies responded to 19-year-old Hoehn’s hotel room “where reports say people were ordering pizza with a stolen credit card,” the Naples Daily News reports. Hoehn was arrested and charged with possession of Xanax.

By the way — that mayonnaise lover’s pizza was never actually offered by Pizza Hut. It’s just a figment of my nightmares.

Teen driver steals vehicle, rams police car
Looking to make a case against teen drivers? This item is for you.

Cody Thomas Schaff of Shippensburg, Pa., has been charged with attempted murder of a police officer following a June 1 chase in Madison County. Va., during which the 18-year-old Schaff allegedly rammed a police vehicle.

Schaff apparently swapped one stolen vehicle for another. “Deputies received a call around 5:30 p.m. that a truck had been stolen from the 7-Eleven store in Madison,” the Culpeper Star-Exponent reports. “Another vehicle left at the 7-Eleven had been stolen from Pennsylvania, deputies said.”

According to a release from the sheriff’s office, a deputy caught sight of Schaff and the stolen 2006 Ford pickup truck, with the suspect filling up the vehicle using a stolen credit card, then jumping into the vehicle and speeding off. Police pursued the vehicle.

Based on dispatch conversations, Schaff apparently traveled at speeds in excess of 100 mph. “During the chase, Schaff allegedly pulled up behind a sheriff’s cruiser and attempted a pursuit immobilization technique, striking the left rear of the patrol vehicle and striking the vehicle again after it spun around sideways,” the Star-Exponent reports. Police are trained to use that maneuver to end chases.

The patrol vehicle skidded onto the right shoulder of the road, while Schaff also lost control of his vehicle, which skidded off the road, hitting a guardrail and rolling over several times. Schaff was thrown from the truck.

This apparently wasn’t the teen’s first run-in with the law. Pennsylvania police told Cumberland County, Pa.’s The Sentinel newspaper “the search for Schaff began Sunday in Shippensburg after Schaff apparently cut a probation department monitoring device from his ankle, triggering an alert to authorities.”

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  • At 17 and do not think about the consequences, thought that nobody would realize.

  • InterestRateCrime

    Why not, she just needs a good sized bail out right? Some criminal behavior is just more tolerated – like the bankers/credit cards who are allowed freely to steal, gouge, wipe Americans out, then get bailed out and WE get to pay more because of it. So where’s the example of good behavior? Hmmm? I wonder?

  • troubled teens

    The main reason for these type of irresponsible activities is due to teens peer’s, even though a teen looks fine at school or at home but when he mixed up with some of his rebellious and risky teens. Parents need to be cautious to provide better teen parenting with finding more information about teens friends.

  • These kids lack parental guidance, that’s for sure. Or if not, they just got involved with the wrong crowd. Teens these days are becoming more violent and manipulative each day. Troubled teens like them should be given help to be able to change their negative behaviors.