20 weeks in prison for woman who tried to defraud victims in their homes
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A woman who made fraudulent statements to get money from vulnerable victims has been sentenced to 20 weeks in prison thanks to work by officers and staff at Lincolnshire Police.
Romayne Thompson, 31, of no fixed address, had approached several people in a residential area and made false statements about her circumstances before asking for money. In one case, cash was handed over. All four offences took place on 20 October in Skellingthorpe village, starting at around 6pm.
In one incident, she approached a resident at their home claiming she was the granddaughter of a local person, and asking to come inside and stating she was pregnant and unwell. She was denied access.
Minutes later, she approached a different address making the same claim and asking for money or a lift back to town. She tried to edge her way into the property but the owner’s dog blocked her path enabling the resident to close the door. The resident was left very shaken by the incident.
Less than ten minutes later she approached another address making the same claim of being the granddaughter of a local resident and asking for money for a taxi because her “grandfather is really poorly”. She left before being given any money.
Then, at 6.20pm she attended another property and presented herself as a charity collector and asked for money. The homeowner challenged her around her identification, and Thompson made efforts to enter the property and continued to ask for money, making the victim feel unsafe and intimidated. She eventually was given £20 before leaving.
Following a team effort over several weeks by officers working together from the Lincoln North, Centre, South and Hykeham Neighbourhood Policing Teams, as well as the anti-social behaviour team, the integrated offender management team and Response officers, she has been charged with four counts of fraud by false representation.
PC Chris Bayes-Walker helped to secure the this week’s conviction. He said: This is an individual who doesn’t care that her behaviour is intimidating to her victims, who feel pressured into handing over money when they might otherwise choose to ignore the request. She lies and takes advantage of goodwill to elicit money from people feeling sorry for her, or vulnerable people who feel they cannot say no or turn her away. We began to receive intelligence that she was offending and worked closely with the local community, the victims she targeted, and officers from other teams in the Force to ensure that we could secure a conviction which would take her off the streets.”
She was also charged with breaching a two-year Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) for begging in Chatterton Avenue in Lincoln on 18 October. Thompson had been given a CBO in August this year following a prolific period of begging which took place between May and June in Lincoln city centre. In the space of just one week in June, she had approached in excess of 50 people in Lincoln High Street to directly ask them for money, as well as follow individuals to cash points and make further requests when they have withdrawn their money.
Her CBO has specific conditions not to beg for money or goods within the Lincoln city boundary, and will remain in place after her sentence has completed.
She appeared at Lincoln Magistrates' Court today (2 November). She has been sentenced to five 20 week sentences in prison for each of the four fraud charges, and the breach of the CBO. The sentences will run concurrently, meaning she will begins a 20-week custody stay from now.