Local News

Warrant: Raleigh woman used roommates info to steal more than $100,000

Posted December 14, 2017 11:10 a.m. EST
Updated December 14, 2017 5:37 p.m. EST

— A Raleigh woman, charged with stealing more than $100,000 worth of cash and property from her roommate, is cooperating with authorities and in recovery, her attorney told the court Thursday.

Cheryl Anntoinette Risley, 69, made her first appearance in court on charges of exploiting a disabled or elderly person and several counts of obtaining property by false pretense, uttering a forged instrument and felony larceny, according to an arrest warrant. She was booked under a $400,000 bond.

Authorities said Risley used the name, Social Security number, birth date and identifiable information of her then-roommate, Elsa Mumma, 76, to buy items, open credit cards, make purchases and steal money between Nov. 2015 and Oct. 2017.

Mumma said the two met at a retirement community – both were widows -- and she invited Risley to move into her home.

"This just came out of the blue, just absolutely shocked me," Mumma said. "Be very, very careful. Even if you think it is a best friend be careful."

Mumma said Risley deserves to be punished.

"She deserves anything and everything she can get ... what she did was wrong and hurtful," she said.

Jesse Scharff, Risley's attorney, says his client is in recovery from substance abuse and is taking some responsibility for her actions.

"She's been candid with law enforcement and cooperative with them that she's made some mistakes and is willing to do whatever she can to rectify that," Scharff said.

Police said the value of the money, assets and services taken by Risley was $135,235.29.