Policeman’s wife admits defrauding friends, LPD officers in cancer scam
JEFFERSON COUNTY – Ann Crall faces as much as 15 years in prison when she is sentenced next month for taking almost $60,000 from folks, including colleagues of her police officer husband, claiming she had cancer and needed the money to pay for life-saving treatment.
But last week, the 31-year-old Highlands Ranch resident admitted she was committing fraud when accepting charity from Lakewood’s police and other law enforcement agencies as well as individuals who were hoping to help as woman they believed was fighting a lethal disease.
Crall was accused of providing a forged document from the Colorado Rocky Mountain Cancer Clinic saying that she had been treated for cancer.
Crall was in Jefferson County Court Friday to plead guilty to a single count of felony theft and a count of “charitable fraud,” also a felony.
Crall was indicted in September, 2009, more than three years after she began telling people that she had been diagnosed with cancer in 2005 and was in a costly treatment program. But prosecutors said there is no evidence she ever had cancer.
For four years, prosecutors said, Crall “continued the pretense while accepting charitable contributions” from friends, neighbors, church members and many of her husband’s LPD co-workers, all of whom donated money, time and food to help out.
Crall’s husband worked for the Lakewood Police Department. Employees of the department, as well as other law enforcement agencies, made contributions to help with what they believed to be cancer treatments for Ann Crall and the family’s financial difficulties. Court records show that many of those trying to help the family through what they thought were financial difficulties resulting from a costly treatment regimen made bi-monthly donations deposited directly into the Cralls’ bank account.
And, between January 2006 and December 2008, more than 1,000 donations rolled in, many of them from fundraising efforts, according to the District Attorney’s Office.
But early in 2009, the Lakewood Employees Assistance Foundation became concerned about Ann Crall’s claims, suspecting she might not actually have cancer. The foundation requested documentation proving she had been diagnosed with cancer and an investigation ensued.
When she is sentenced April 28, Crall could be sentenced to a maximum of 15 years in prison.