The Mountain Times

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Rutland couple accused of staging robbery to cover up embezzlement


WALLINGFORD- On a April 11, police solved the mystery behind a reported armed robbery late last month: It was staged. Kelly English, age 32 from Rutland the store manager of Smart Shop a Wallingford gas station, began taking money from the Smart Shop store around Christmas to help pay for her and her boyfriend's prescription pill addiction, police learned.

English's boyfriend, William Shaw, age 30 also of Rutland, told police they staged the robbery "keep them out of trouble" because they knew the company's district manager was starting to figure out the money was missing. He said they had used about $6,000 to $10,000 from the deposits to buy drugs.

Court documents show that at least $9,795 were stolen by Shaw and English - this includes $145 taken during the robbery.
On Friday, April 12, at 12:30 p.m Shaw and English appeared in criminal court in Rutland. Shaw pleaded innocent to the charge of having knowledge of the commission of a felony. English, who is six months pregnant, pleaded innocent to four charges of embezzlement and one court of giving false information to law enforcement. English and Shaw were held on lack of $25,000 bail.
If found guilty of the charges, Shaw faces up to 10 years in prison, while English faces up to 41 years in prison.

The investigation began on March 26, when the Vermont State Police in Rutland, Vt, responded to a 9-1-1 call of a reported armed robbery at the Smart Shop/Mobile station located at 172 N. Main Street in in the town of Wallingford, Vt. At this time, police reported that the pregnant female store manager alleged that she had been robbed at knife point, forced into a bathroom and the store's bank deposit bags had been stolen. The suspect then allegedly stole the manager's vehicle and fled the scene.

During the course of the investigation information was developed that the alleged robbery had in fact been staged. As the investigation progressed it was found that the store's manager, Kelly English age 32 from Rutland, Vt., had been embezzling money form the store's deposits; using a process commonly referred to as "rolling deposits" where money is taken out of one deposit and converted to the suspect's own use. Then money from the next deposit is used to balance out the previous deposit where the money had been removed.

Shaw told Detective Sgt. Albert Abdelnour that in February they had used their tax refund of $5,500 to repay the store's deposits but ran out of money in March and continued to take money from the store, according to the affidavit.