Franklin woman facing forgery, theft charges

A Franklin woman already charged with altering a check is facing additional charges of forgery and theft.

Sugarcreek Borough police said in a criminal complaint that a neighbor of Montice Robinson, 39, told police that during late 2020 and most of 2021, Robinson would help her around the house with things as well as help her with bills and finances since her mobility is limited.

During that time, Robinson began taking the woman’s credit card and transferring money to herself through a series of payments made to PayPal in Robinson’s name, the complaint said. Robinson would also make other purchases without the woman authorizing or permitting the charges to her account, according to the complaint.

Once the woman began to notice the money issues, Robinson left and would not come around, answer the woman’s phone calls or respond to her in any way, the complaint said.

An associate of the woman noticed the money issues were more extensive than the woman realized and receipts showed Robinson had taken $1,156.17 in funds from the woman without her permission, the complaint said.

Meanwhile, Sugarcreek police said in a separate criminal complaint related to another case that police spoke to the manager of Crestview Apartments who said Robinson receives a check each month from the apartment complex and she is to cash the check and deposit the money.

Police said in the complaint that Robinson cashed two of the checks twice.

Then on Dec. 30, Sugarcreek police went to one of the apartments at Crestview Apartments to arrest Robinson on a felony arrest warrant, according to a criminal complaint.

No one opened the door, and officers could hear movement inside the apartment, the complaint said. Police warned Steven Bickel, 37, who was also in the apartment, that if he didn’t open the door he would face charges, according to the complaint.

Police continued to knock as they waited for 90 minutes, then they eventually entered the apartment and arrested Roninson after a search warrant was granted, police said.

Robinson has been charged with nine felony counts each of publish, make, see access device altered and access device is unauthorized by the issuer, six felony counts of forgery, 11 misdemeanor counts each of theft by unlawful taking-movable property and theft by deception-fail to correct and two summary counts of bad checks.

Bickel has been charged with a felony count of hinder apprehension/prosecution-harbor or conceal and a misdemeanor count of obstruct administration of law.

Preliminary hearings for Robinson and Bickel are scheduled for Feb. 2 in Venango County Central Court.