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CHECK THEFT BRINGS TERM OF 131/2 YEARS

A woman with multiple names and multiple addresses will spend multiple years behind bars.

Susan Hare, who also goes by the name Susan Standish and lists addresses in Lockport and Batavia, was sentenced Monday in Orleans County Court to 13 1/2 years in prison for stealing a check from a Lyndonville woman.

Hare, 40, was convicted in August on charges of burglary, grand larceny, possession of stolen property and forgery for taking a check from the 85-year-old woman and cashing it. As part of the sentence, Hare also was ordered to pay $50,000 restitution.

She also was ordered to serve 6 to 12 years for grand larceny and criminal possession of stolen property, as well as 3 1/2 to 7 years for forgery, with all terms to run concurrently.

Hare maintained the money was a loan, an assertion denied by the victim.

District Attorney Joseph V. Cardone asked for the maximum of 15 years. Cardone noted that Hare was convicted in the same court in 1999 on a felony charge of scheme to defraud, as well as other arrests, which he called evidence of a pattern.

"There's been one series of deceptions after another and another," he said before the sentence was handed down.

According to Cardone, Hare knew her victim had a substantial amount of money tied up in investments and went to her Lyndonville home in September 2003 in an effort to get some of the money. Cardone said Hare, using a fake name, attempted to put the woman at ease by building a rapport with her. When the woman left the room they were in for a few minutes, she pocketed a blank check and left the home.

Judge James Punch agreed with the prosecution's characterization of the defendant.

"You are the most dishonest person I have ever met," Punch said of his 25 years as a judge and lawyer. "(You're) absolutely parasitic and a cancer to everyone you meet."

Hare turned down a plea offer Aug. 9 that would have capped a maximum jail term at five years.

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