September 13, 2008 in Nation/World

33-year-old accused of stealing daughter’s ID to be cheerleader

Associated Press

GREEN BAY, Wis. – A 33-year-old woman stole her daughter’s identity to attend high school and join the cheerleading squad, according to a criminal complaint filed against the woman.

Wendy Brown, of Green Bay, faces a felony identity theft charge after enrolling in Ashwaubenon High School as her 15-year-old daughter, who lives in Nevada with Brown’s mother.

According to the complaint, Brown wanted to get her high school degree and become a cheerleader because she didn’t have a childhood and wanted to regain a part of her life that she’d missed.

Brown allegedly attended cheerleading practices before school started, received a cheerleader’s locker and went to a pool party at the cheerleading coach’s house. The $134.50 check Brown gave to the cheerleading coach for her uniform bounced, the complaint said.

A high school employee, Kim Demeny, told authorities that the woman, posing as the teen, seemed very timid. Demeny said she told her she was not good at math and even cried when she talked about moving from Pahrump Valley High School in Nevada. Demeny said she looked older than a student but had the demeanor of a high school girl.

A school liaison officer started investigating after Brown only attended the first day of classes last week, the complaint said.

Assistant Principal Dirk Ribbins later learned Brown’s daughter was enrolled at Pahrump Valley High School. Ribbins also spoke with Brown’s mother, who told him she had custody of the girl. She said Brown has a history of identity theft crimes, the complaint said.

Brown made her first court appearance Friday by video conference. The judge set bond at $8,000. If convicted, she could face up to six years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

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