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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Kansas

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Mother Pleads Guilty to ID Theft When She Fled the Country with Daughters

KANSAS CITY, KAN. – A Lawrence woman pleaded guilty Tuesday to forging her ex-husband’s signature on official documents when she fled to Europe with her daughters, U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said Tuesday.

Samantha C. Elmer, 33, Lawrence, Kan., pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated identity theft. In her plea she admitted she forged her husband’s signature on a document giving her consent to take their two daughters to Europe. She filed the document as part of the process of getting passports for the girls.

Elmer was charged in December after she returned from Europe with the girls, 9 and 11 years old.

Sentencing will be set for a later date. She faces a maximum penalty of two years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000.

Grissom commended the following agencies that worked on the investigation: the Lawrence Police Department, the FBI, Homeland Security Investigations, the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office, the Eudora Police Department, the Overland Park Police Department and the Johnson County District Attorney’s Office, as well as the prosecutor, Assistant U.S. Attorney Chris Oakley.

Updated February 4, 2016