Chicago Mom Arrested For Allegedly Stealing Taraji P. Henson’s Identity
A mom of six, suffering from bipolar disorder and currently pregnant with her seventh child, is in hot water after she allegedly stole Taraji P. Henson‘s identity. 29-year-old Alicia Newby was reportedly able to rack up $12K after targeting the Empire actress and several others.
From the Chicago Tribune:
A pregnant mother of six trembled throughout a court hearing Sunday as prosecutors accused her of stealing the identities of several people, including a star of the Fox television show “Empire,” and collecting thousands of dollars in merchandise mailed to dummy addresses.
Alicia Newby quietly sobbed next to her court-appointed attorney at the Leighton Criminal Court Building, charged with a single felony count of continuing a financial crime enterprise. Newby, 29, was ordered released on a $10,000 signature bail and electronic monitoring, but was forbidden from contacting victims or witnesses.
During the hearing before Judge Charles S. Beach II, prosecutors didn’t name either of Newby’s alleged victims, but police and court records list actress Taraji P. Henson, 48, as one of them. A representative for the Oscar- and Emmy-nominated actress who stars in the hip-hop drama that films in Chicago couldn’t be reached for comment Sunday afternoon.
According to the report, about $4,000 worth of fraudulent charges were canceled after Henson’s manager noticed a discrepancy last August. The connection between Newby and avid mental health advocate Taraji P. Henson hasn’t been discovered yet, but authorities say Newby somehow gained access to Henson’s email…
Authorities did not say how Newby and Henson knew one another, but a police source said investigators were also looking into whether any other cast members of “Empire” may have been victims.A key to Newby’s success was compromising Henson’s email, prosecutors said.
“Once this was done, the defendant then raided the account for a variety of information,” including phone numbers, addresses, financial accounts and telephone numbers that she could then use to purchase items online, Assistant State’s Attorney James Costello told the court.
In addition to defrauding Henson, Newby also defrauded JP Morgan Chase, American Express and PayPal and multiple other merchants in her scheme, according to charging documents.
Yikes! It also appears this isn’t Newby’s only run-in with the law…
Last September, a U.S. Postal Service letter carrier refused to deliver packages to one of the addresses, believing it was being used in an ID theft scam, but was allegedly “assaulted” by Newby, demanding that she deliver the packages, prosecutors said. Police officers called to the scene captured the woman’s demands on body-worn camera. But Newby later received the packages after she caused a scene at the local post office, Costello said.
Authorities lost track of Newby in December after she cleared out of an apartment, leaving behind thousands of dollars in damages and about $4,000 in unpaid rent. She resurfaced earlier this year when she pawned a designer purse using her real state identification card, Costello said. The pawnbroker and three postal employees identified Newby by photo.
We hope this young woman and her children get the help that they need.