Ex-theft convict sentenced again
Woman gets 54 months in credit card scam, 10 years after theft term.
A Hamilton wife HAMILTON — and mother who was convicted 10 years ago of theft has been sent to prison for another financial crime.
Michelle Gabbard, 41, pleaded guilty in July to identity fraud and misusing credit cards for making more than $10,000 in purchases using a credit card opened in another person’s name. She was sentenced to prison last month for 54 months.
Gabbard, the wife of a Hamilton firefighter who nearly died in a training accident in 2007, received a 180-day jail sentence in 2008 for stealing more than $30,000 from Chaco Credit Union. Butler County Common Pleas Judge Craig Hedric also placed Gabbard on probation for five years, and she was ordered to perform 200 hours of community service.
In 2008, Gabbard was a former loan officer at the credit union’s downtown Hamilton location when she was arrested for the fourth-degree felony. Over a twoyear period, Gabbard embezzled the money from the credit union, but she did make restitution, according to the prosecutor’s office.
Ten years later, Gabbard was indicted again, this time for three felony charges involving friends.
The May indictment for identity fraud, theft by deception and misuse of credit card states Gabbard “from her personal email applied via the internet for an American Express Card using the name, date of birth, address and social security number of Andrew T. Pfirman ... on or about June 6, 2017.”
According to court records, Gabbard used Pfirman’s bank account to make payment on the credit card for $3,186.29 on Oct. 30, 2017. During a three-month period, she used the credit card for personal expenses totaling $10,861.13, according to records.
Assistant Butler County Prosecutor Gloria Sigman, who prosecuted the most recent case, said Gabbard befriended the Pfirmam family and was able to gain access to mail and banking information.
After Gabbard pleaded guilty to two of the three felony charges, Butler County Common Pleas Judge Noah Powers II sentenced her to more than four years in prison Sept. 25. Her attorney, Ken Crehan, family and friends spoke on her behalf at the hearing.
The mother of two suffers from arthritis and lupus as well as depression and post-traumatic stress “from her husband, Chris, basically dying and being resuscitated,” Crehan told the judge.
Chris Gabbard said “ever since my accident, she has been our rock.”
“I never meant to hurt anybody, they are both wonderful people,” Michelle Gabbard said. “I feel so terrible about it.”
But Pfirman had little sympathy. He said his family has gone through difficult medical issues and he didn’t steal credit cards.
“This was calculated, she planned it out and she has done it before,” Pfirman said. “She is sorry she got caught.”
The judge said it’s possible Gabbard could be granted some type of judicial release and placed on community control depending on prison behavior.
“That is not a promise. I need to see something personal from you,” Powers said. Contact this reporter at 513-7052841 or email Lauren.Pack@coxinc. com.
‘Our sales were certainly up in August and September. Although they’ve been up all year, I do think the Levitt has helped.’
Michelle Gabbard was sentenced last month to 54 months in prison on charges of identity fraud and misusing credit cards. She was convicted in 2008 of stealing from a credit union.