New York Woman Stole From Hudson Valley Families at Funerals
A New York City woman is accused of breaking into a number of Hudson Valley homes she targeted because she knew the family was burying a loved one.
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Westchester County District Attorney Miriam E. Rocah announced that after a week-long trial, a jury on Thursday found Bronx resident Latonia Stewart guilty of burglarizing six homes of families she targeted in the Hudson Valley because they were attending funeral services of loved ones between 2017 and 2018.
Between December 2017 and May 2018, Stewart burglarized the homes of six Westchester County residents in Cortlandt, Greenburgh, Ossining, Rye Brook, Scarsdale, and Tarrytown who were out of the house attending their spouse’s wake or funeral service.
Stewart targeted the homes after searching through obituaries online, officials say.
Jewelry, watches, silverware and other valuables were stolen.
Stewart used a sledgehammer to break windows and glass doors to gain entry into certain homes, and caused further damage to the homes once inside.
“It is absolutely appalling that people mourning the loss of a loved one were specifically targeted and taken advantage of in such a cruel and heinous manner,” Rocah said. “I commend the great work of my team, the Greenburgh Police Department, and the other law enforcement partners who handled this case, and I hope that this verdict brings some measure of comfort to the victims.
On May 1, 2018, Greenburgh Police arrested Stewart after observing her driving away from the home of a deceased person with jewelry in the vehicle and the website with an obituary pulled up on her cellphone.
Following her arrest, police recovered more stolen items and burglar tools in her car and at her Bronx residence.
Stewart, 30, was found guilty of six counts of burglary and criminal possession of stolen property, both felonies. Stewart faces a sentence range from a minimum of 3 1/2 years to a maximum of 15 years in a state prison on each burglary count.
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