Former dog-sitter helps self to $160k | AspenTimes.com

Former dog-sitter helps self to $160k

A dog-sitter allegedly stole her former employer's checkbook and wrote 45 checks to herself over several months totaling nearly $160,000, according to court documents.

Vanessa Simon, 21, who now lives in Denver, admitted to the theft when a Pitkin County sheriff's deputy called her Friday, according to an affidavit filed in Pitkin County District Court.

Simon told the deputy she doesn't have a job and has been paying her bills using her former Aspen employer's checks, the affidavit states.

"I'm in school and I needed funding," Simon told the deputy, according to the affidavit. "When asked how she got the checks, Simon told me, 'I stole them.'"

Simon worked as a dog-sitter for an Aspen resident until she was fired in May. Since then, 45 of the resident's checks totaling $159,800 were written to Simon and cashed at a bank in Denver, according to the affidavit.

The first check was written April 20, while the most recent check was dated Jan. 8. The 45 individual checks were written for between $500 and $9,500, the affidavit states. All were written to Simon and allegedly signed by the Aspen resident.

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Simon was charged with 45 counts of felony forgery and one count of felony theft.

jauslander@aspentimes.com