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Carlee Russell

Source: Hoover Police Department / Hoover PD

Carlee Russell has been found guilty of faking her own abduction, with the judge recommending jail time.

On Wednesday (October 11), Hoover, Alabama Municipal Judge Brad Bishop found Carlee Russell guilty of faking her own kidnapping. The verdict comes after Russell pleaded not guilty to charges of false reporting to law enforcement and falsely reporting an incident. Judge Bishop found her guilty, spurred by the recommendation of the state prosecutors. The judge also recommended that the 26-year-old serve a prison sentence of one year along with paying restitution of $17,874. In addition, he added two fines of $827 each. 

Russell had seemingly disappeared on July 13th on her way home from work after calling 911 to report a toddler in a diaper she alleged to have seen walking alone along Interstate 459. When the police arrived, they found her vehicle and her phone but she was missing. Russell would then show up at her parents’ doorstep two days later claiming she was abducted. Upon investigation, law enforcement discovered discrepancies. Russell would later admit it was a hoax, leading to her losing her job at Woodland Day Spa.

Lawyer Emory Anthony, who is representing Russell along with Richard Jaffe, has stated that they plan to appeal as she was in municipal court – in that setting, there is no jury trial. Judge Bishop did acknowledge that defendants often appeal to take it to the Jefferson County Circuit Court to obtain a trial with a jury of their peers.

“There’s no need of having a trial here, knowing their position,’’ Anthony said. “We have stipulated and appealed the case and it will start anew in the Bessemer Circuit Court.” With regard to the judge’s recommendation for jail time, he and Jaffe feel it is too steep considering that the Class A misdemeanor is Russell’s first offense. 

He also said that Russell is not opposed to paying restitution. “I think anything is fair when it comes to restitution with the expenses that were done. So we have to say that is fair,” he said. “Anytime you assert restitution it has to be proven. The amount, $17 thousand and some, hours spent, I would think that would be fair.”

 

 

Fake Abductee Carlee Russell Found Guilty, Judge Seeks Jail Time  was originally published on hiphopwired.com