Woman Charged With Credit-Card Theft from USC Resident
Among the cases heard Monday by District Judge Robert Wyda were local incidents involving fraud, parole violation by retail theft and driving under the influence of alcohol.
A woman accused of making more than $3,000 worth of unauthorized purchases on an Upper St. Clair man’s credit card has had her hearing delayed while she is in rehabilitation.
Township police charged Jennifer Mrozek, 28, of Uniontown with forgery and access device fraud for using the card of a 73-year-old stroke victim, according to records filed with District Judge Robert Wyda.
The police reported stated that the victim “had befriended Ms. Mrozek and was trying to assist her with some personal issues,” and he lent her his card “to purchase a carton of cigarettes and some ice cream.”
“The card was returned,” the report continued, “but shortly afterward ne noticed it missing from his wallet. It reappeared, but then the billing statement showed heavy unauthorized use of the card totaling $3,100.35.”
Mrozek admitted on April 25 that she used the card and forged the victim’s signature, according to police. She was arrested, then released under the conditions that she have no further contact with the victim and that she undergo drug and alcohol evaluation.
Her hearing Monday before Wyda was continued. She is in Gateway Rehabilitation Center’s adult stabilization unit until approximately mid-July, according to court records.
T-shirt theft lands man in jail: Michael Howard Smith Rouse pleaded guilty before Wyda on Monday to summary retail theft for stealing two T-shirts, valued at a total of $13.96, from Sears in South Hills Village.
The June 13 incident, though, violated Rouse’s parole, so he was returned to Allegheny County Jail following his hearing. Rouse, 23, of Pittsburgh had seven prior convictions for retail theft, according to court records.
In October, he was placed on an Allegheny County Second Chance Re-Entry Program service plan, with the stipulation that he participate in the Goodwill Harbour Housing Program. He had been living at a Goodwill residence in the South Side.
A Goodwill representative and Rouse’s employer both vouched for his character in letters submitted to the courts, calling him “pleasant and easy to work with” and “a good employee.”
Woman charged with DUI: An Upper St. Clair woman waived her preliminary hearing before Wyda Monday on charges that she had more than three times the legal limit of alcohol in her system while she was driving.
Upper St. Clair police were notified May 19 about a maroon Mercedes-Benz that was moving slowly and weaving between lanes on McLaughlin Run Road. Police then observed the vehicle, driven by Darlene M. Higginbotham, in front of the township municipal building, according to court records:
“At first, it appeared to be stopped with a long line of traffic behind it, but then (we) saw it was moving very slowly.” Police pulled Higginbotham over and conducted a field sobriety test, then transported her to St. Clair Hospital to draw blood.
Higginbothan, 63, was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol after her blood alcohol level was measured at .303 percent, according to Wyda. The state presumes intoxication at .08 percent.