Theft ring steals $32,000+ from West Union man

Police Car
A police car photo taken at the scene of a crime.

West Union, Iowa – Six people are facing charges for what Fayette County Sheriff Marty Fisher calls a theft ring. The suspects allegedly conspired to steal over 32-thousand dollars from a West Union man.

The crime victim, a man in his 60s, had hired 46-year-old Patsy Ann Martin of West Union to serve as his caretaker.

Martin was “posing” as a caretaker, according to Sheriff Fisher, and she wrote checks from the victim’s bank account – paying other people who posed as either caretakers or home repair workers. According to Fisher, no real “work” was done to the home.

The investigation revealed around 35 checks from the victim’s account were written to the suspects. Martin took the most money from the victim – around 18-thousand dollars over a two-month period, according to Fisher. Arrest warrants were issued for all six subjects on Tuesday and four were taken into custody. Martin led authorities on a short chase and deputies used a drone and a dog to track her down.

Two other suspects in the case remain at large, as of Wednesday afternoon. The six suspects involved in the theft ring are from the towns of West Union, Manchester, Jesup, and Hawkeye. Fisher said he expects additional arrests and more charges in the case, while deputies check to see if there could more victims of the theft ring.

The subjects charged include:

Chelsea Leann Rasmussen, age 24, of West Union, had taken over $550.00 and was charged with Theft in the third degree (Aggravated Misdemeanor)

 

Charles John Fels, age 29, of West Union, had taken over $500.00 and was charged with Theft in the third degree (Aggravated Misdemeanor)

 

Michael Leyton Walters, age 30, of Manchester, had taken over $4,000.00 and was charged with Theft in the second degree (Class “D” Felony)

 

Darcy Ann Miner, age 25, of Jesup, had taken over $4,000.00 and was charged with Theft in the second degree (Class “D” Felony)

 

Ashley Marie White, age 30, of Hawkeye, had taken over $5,000.00 and was charged with Theft in the second degree (Class “D” Felony)

 

Patsy Ann Martin, age 46, of West Union, had taken over $18,000.00 and was charged with Theft in the first degree ( Class “C” Felony)

Miner and Walters are still at large and active warrants for their arrest are in place.

Sheriff Marty Fisher asked if anyone has paid for services from any of the above subjects to please contact the Sheriff’s Office at 563-422-6067.

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