Identity Theft: Trust No One

Another Identity Theft Case Proves You Don't Know Who You Can Trust

Think your friends would never commit identity theft? Think your neighbor would never break into your house? After all, you live in an upscale neighborhood and associate with educated sorts. You're safe, right? Wrong. A recent identity theft case proves you just don't know who you can trust.

Good Girl Gone Bad?

Jocelyn Kirsch, a 22-year-old college student, is supposed to be entering a plea in federal court in the very near future. What crime could a 22-year-old college student possibly be guilty of? How about identity theft scams that netted more than $120,000.

The sad thing is, Jocelyn didn't just steal from strangers (although that was bad in and of itself), she did something even more horrific. She stole from friends and neighbors.

Other tenants who lived in the same building as Jocelyn's $3,000-a-month apartment had their homes broken into by Jocelyn and her boyfriend. They stole personal information and even had keys made to some of the apartments, allowing easy access whenever they wanted.

The identity theft crimes didn't just pay for the $3,000-a-month apartment either. They paid for luxurious vacations and high-end couture.

Does Crime Pay?

This is the sad part - some experts are guessing that Jocelyn will only serve two years in prison, and no more than five. Five years for stealing someone's identity? Five years for stealing in excess of $120,000? Five years for betraying trusts of those who live and work near you?

There's two lessons to be learned here... First, don't assume you can trust someone. People thought they could trust this seemingly-innocent 22-year-old college girl. They were wrong.

Second, we really do need to have stronger punishments imposed on identity theft criminals like this one. Otherwise, we're sending the message that identity theft is not a seriously punishable crime.

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