Woman goes to prison for stealing
September 23, 2016
A California woman will be spending close to a decade in prison for stealing.
Danielle Benefield, 34, was sentenced on Tuesday for fraudulent use of a credit card for her July 2015 offense.
She brushed up against a woman at WalMart and stole the woman's clutch and used her credit cards.
Around the same time she was arrested in Washoe County for doing the same thing.
Attorney Maria Pence said that Benefield was homeless and stealing to buy food and get into hotel rooms.
Her criminal history reflected a lifetime of theft and burglary charges.
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"She essentially has conducted herself as a thief for a decade," said Deputy District Attorney Brian Filter.
In addition to struggling with alcoholism, Benefield also has three children, and hopes to be a part of their lives when she gets out.
"I apologize to my victim," said Benefield. "It wasn't an accident, it wasn't a mistake, I knew very well what I was doing."
She is serving three consecutive prison terms from Washoe for 4-10 years, 2-5 years and 19-48 months.
Judge Tod Young ordered that she serve an additional consecutive term of 12-30 months.
She won't be eligible for parole for 8.5 years, and if denied parole she could end up serving over 20 years.
She has credit for 15 days time served.
"Ms. Benefield, I wish you well," said Young. "You need to change."
■ Ronnie Rayon, 33, stuck to his not guilty plea and will have a trial set for later this year to see if he actually took a car without permission like he is being accused.
Rayon went to the Carson Valley Inn with a friend from California, where they gambled all night.
Later that night Ronnie got the car from the valet, without a valet ticket, and drove the car to California where he abandoned it on the side of the road.
The next court date is Nov. 3.
■ Mollie McCarthy Adams, 28, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to felony arson in the fourth degree.
Adams was staying at Harveys Lake Tahoe when she set fire to newspapers in her hotel room.
Hotel staff also saw her throw hypodermic needles out the window.
Adams is going to try and get into a treatment program to help with her drug addiction.
"I just want to do better with my life," said Adams.
The request for an own recognizance lease was denied, but Young said that if she posts bail she needs to get into a treatment program immediately.
Sentencing was set for Nov. 15.
■ A warrant was issued for Shane Wedin, 22, who failed to appear on Tuesday for sentencing.
Wedin is facing grand larceny after he stole a backpack full of ink cartridges from Walmart.
He was released on his own recognizance at the end of August, and is facing up to 60 months in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.