A Durango woman suspected of opening credit accounts in other people’s names to fund her personal shopping sprees was charged Friday in 6th Judicial District Court with three counts of identity theft.
Sandra Morris, 31, was free on bail for identity theft when she picked up the new charges. She also was on probation for previous cases of identity theft, according to court records.
Morris is being held in the La Plata County Jail on a $75,000 cash-only bail.
Her public defense lawyer, Barrie Newberger King, asked for a reduction in bail, saying Morris has never missed a court date, she has a young son to care for and she has been receiving substance abuse treatment from a counselor who doesn’t work in the jail.
Deputy District Attorney Reid Stewart objected to any modification of the bail amount, saying Morris committed another theft six days after appearing before a judge in a previous case, and more victims are coming forward.
“I’m at a loss with Ms. Morris,” Reid said. “I don’t know how to protect the community against her. ... If you let Ms. Morris out, I think we’re going to have more victims.”
District Judge Todd Norvell seemed to agree. While Morris shows up to court, she seems to keep committing new crimes while free, he said.
“I think the main concern is that she won’t stop stealing,” he said.
Morris has cases dating to 2013 related to identity theft. She was sentenced to prison in one of those cases, but in 2015, a judge let her out early and placed her on probation. She has since picked up two new cases.
According to court records, she has stolen personal information from fellow employees at Denny’s Restaurant and possibly Applebee’s to open credit accounts at Walmart, Lowe’s, Kohl’s Department Store, American Express, Amazon.com, Victoria’s Secret, Home Shopping Network and others.
She used the fraudulent accounts to purchase fairly mundane items, such as jewelry, cooking pots, makeup, children’s clothing and items from Victoria’s Secret, including perfume and a satin kimono.