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Press Release

Former Fugitive Member Of A Pickpocket Crew Sentenced To More Prison Time For Failing To Surrender To Serve Her Sentence

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Maryland

Destroyed Electronic Monitoring Equipment When She Fled

Baltimore, Maryland – U.S. District Judge Marvin J. Garbis sentenced Crystal Barner, age 28, of Baltimore, today to 14 months in prison for failing to report to serve her sentence in a previous case. Judge Garbis ordered that today’s sentence be served consecutive to Barner’s 33 month sentence in that case.

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; U.S. Marshal Johnny Hughes; Special Agent in Charge Brian Murphy of the United States Secret Service – Baltimore Field Office; Colonel Michael Kundrat, Chief of the Maryland Transportation Authority Police; Chief James W. Johnson of the Baltimore County Police Department; and Commissioner Anthony W. Batts of the Baltimore Police Department.

According to the facts presented at her plea hearing, on December 5, 2013, Barner was sentenced to 33 months incarceration (after credit for time served) and ordered to surrender to serve her sentence on January 6, 2014. This was memorialized in a Judgment entered on December 9, 2013, which stated that Barner should report to the institution designated by the Bureau of Prisons at the date and time specified in a written notice that would be sent to her. If she did not receive such a written notice, Barner was ordered to surrender to the United States Marshal before 2 p.m. on Monday, January 6, 2014.

After the sentencing hearing, Barner was required to go to the Marshals Service to verify her residence. Barner falsely verified her address, although she had moved from that address several months earlier. As a result, Barner did not receive the written notice of where she was supposed to self-surrender to the Bureau of Prisons, nor did she comply with the Court’s Judgment by surrendering to the United States Marshall before 2 p.m. on Monday, January 6, 2014.

When she failed to surrender, Barner was contacted by her Pre-trial Services officer, and told him she would self-surrender. During a subsequent telephone conversation, she told him she was in the area looking for parking. In fact, Barner had absconded from supervision and removed and discarded or destroyed her electronic monitoring equipment.

Barner was previously convicted for her role in a scheme to defraud financial institutions by stealing credit cards from the wallets and purses of unsuspecting individuals, then using the stolen credit cards to make purchases. During the course of the conspiracy, Barner and others obtained goods, services and extensions of credit in the amount of $142,717.61, and caused losses to or used the identities of between 10 and 50 financial institutions, businesses and individuals.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein thanked the U.S. Marshal Service, who apprehended Barner after she fled. Mr. Rosenstein also recognized the U.S. Secret Service, Maryland Transportation Authority Police, Baltimore County Police Department, Baltimore City Police Department, and Atlantic City, New Jersey Police Department for their work in the previous investigation. Mr. Rosenstein praised Assistant U.S. Attorney Tamera L. Fine, who prosecuted the case.

Updated January 26, 2015