Woman pleads to reduced charge in ‘staged’ armed robbery.

June 19, 2018


Woman pleads to reduced charge in ‘staged’ armed robbery.


By Allison Scarbrough, Editor.

LUDINGTON — One of three young women involved in a staged armed robbery of a cash advance store last month pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of conspiracy to commit embezzlement $1,000-$25,0000.

During the testimony of Taya Ilene Wrightsman of 5616 N. Budzynski Road, Sheridan Township, it was revealed that a third suspect, who was an employee of Advance America cash store, was involved in the staged robbery. The third suspect has not been arrested yet, said Mason County Prosecutor Paul Spaniola, but her arrest is expected soon.

Koreana Lynn Reid, 18, also of 5616 N. Budzynski Road, is accused of robbing the cash advance store located at 4928 W. US 10 in Pere Marquette Township.

“I was the driver, and Koreana was the one that went inside, but I knew what she was doing,” Wrightsman testified. “We all knew what was going on.”

“Did the three of you stage an armed robbery?” Spaniola asked her. Wrightsman said Reid and the other suspect told her about it the night before.

“Koreanna dressed as an armed robber,” Wrightsman said.

Both Wrightsman and Reid were charged with one count of armed robbery. Reid has not yet entered a plea.

Reid allegedly used a gun to steal money, and she and Wrightsman drove off in a Jeep Patriot. Then later that day, while detectives were investigating the scene, returned to the store’s parking lot with the same vehicle.

Armed robbery is a felony punishable by up to life imprisonment.

Investigators believe they have recovered all the money stolen. According to Wrightsman’s testimony, they stole $15,000.

See related story here.

Conspiracy to commit embezzlement $1,000-$25,0000 carries a five-year maximum. Wrightsman’s armed robbery charge was dismissed.

“It was all set and staged to make it look like an armed robbery,” Spaniola said. The third suspect in the case pretended to be the victim of the crime.

“We immediately questioned whether someone else was involved,” Spaniola said. There was evidence that led investigators to believe it was an “inside job,” he said.

Wrightsman has no prior record whatsoever, said her attorney Douglas Stevenson. Sentencing guidelines in the case are 0-3 months.

Sentencing is set for Aug. 7 at 2:30 p.m.

This story is copyrighted © 2018, all rights reserved by Media Group 31, LLC, PO Box 21, Scottville, MI 49454. No portion of this story or images may be reproduced in any way, including print or broadcast, without expressed written consent.

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