Mary Ellis Randle: Woman Cashes Aunt's Retirement Checks For Seven Years After She Died

The five stages of grief: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance.

And by "acceptance," we mean continuing to accept -- and cash -- your aunt's monlthly retirement checks for a full seven years after she died.

Mary Ellis Randle, 63, just couldn't bring herself to let go of her probably beloved aunt after she died in July 1999, and apparently the best way to keep her alive in memory was to cash her monthly checks from the United States Railroad Retirement Board.

The U.S. Attorney's office said the woman entered a guilty plea today to defrauding the USRRB out of almost $77,000.

"Randle admitted that she did not inform the RRB of her aunt's death," the USAO says. But she was meaning to!! She just hadn't gotten around to it yet!

There is so much paperwork involved in dealing with a person's estate that some of it doesn't get filed for weeks a month or two a year tops seven years. Perfectly understandable.

Sentencing is set for November. She faces a maximum penalty of ten years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for theft of public money.

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