Source: CVDaily Feed
LOGAN — A 27-year-old Nibley woman who faked a cancer diagnosis, stealing money from local charities, has been sentenced to one-year in jail and other conditions.
Lesley Elizabeth Jensen stood shaking and sobbing as she appeared in 1st District Court Tuesday morning.
Jensen told the court she was deeply saddened and ashamed for her actions. She said she wanted to apologize to everyone she had hurt and appreciated the court giving her the opportunity to change her actions.
Judge Brian Cannell sentenced Jensen to one-year in the Cache County Jail, giving her credit for the three-months she had already served. He also sentenced her to 500-hours of community service with a cancer related charity.
Cache County Attorney James Swink had asked the court to consider sentencing Jensen to prison. Outside the courtroom he said he felt a harsher sentence was justified considering all of the victims.
“The community is still reeling from this,” said Swink. “I hope the sentence today will bring some healing to the community and to the victims, knowing that this type of behavior will not be tolerated. You’ll not only lose your dignity but you’ll spend a lot of time incarcerated.”
Jensen’s attorney, Greg Skordas said his client’s family has already sold her house and all her belongings, to try and help her start paying back the money she stole.
“She’s long since recognized that what she did was wrong and long since recognized that her thinking was horrible,” said Skordas. “She keeps telling me, ‘I wish I could go back, I wish I could go back,’ and of course you can’t. So she also knows she’s also going to have to pay the consequences.”
Jensen was arrested in December accused of forging medical documents, claiming to be diagnosed with advanced stages of glioblastoma brain cancer.
Several local businesses including Cafe Sabor and the Cache Valley for Hope Charity Cancer Foundation, raised over $27,000 for Jensen.
In February, she pleaded guilty to two counts of communications fraud, a second-degree felony and two counts of forgery, a third-degree felony.
During sentencing, Judge Cannell said it’s hard to find anyone who has not been affected by cancer or know someone who has. “My mother died from cancer when I was five-years-old,” he said. “I have stewed over this case for a number of weeks.”