01/14/09 — Suspect in cancer scam faces new charge

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Suspect in cancer scam faces new charge

By Nick Hiltunen
Published in News on January 14, 2009 1:46 PM

A Goldsboro woman accused of bilking a neighbor out of $16,000 on false claims of brain cancer surgery now faces other charges, in Mount Olive and as far away as Tarboro.

Stacie Harrell Pittman, 31, of Fallin Boulevard, has an identity theft warrant for her arrest in Tarboro, according to Sheriff's Office investigators.

TelCo, a loan company in Tarboro, claims that Ms. Harrell obtained three loans using other people's Social Security numbers, and obtained two cars.

A Tarboro police spokesperson could not immediately be reached before deadline today.

Detective Lt. Tom Flores said that the Tarboro charge isn't the only one against Ms. Pittman, who is also accused of victimizing Piggly Wiggly in Mount Olive.

The North Breazeale Avenue store reported that Ms. Pittman obtained $2,000 from the store fraudulently before they ceased to cash her checks, an investigator said.

The store would not cash another $1,800 worth of checks before the other checks cleared, an investigator familiar with the case said.

Ms. Pittman, who has also gone by the last names Kroll and Harrell, also apparently obtained two automobiles fraudulently, Flores said.

Other victims are American General Financial Services, which alleges that Ms. Harrell wrote a felony-level fraudulent check for $41,000, and Sam's Club in Goldsboro, which claimed more than $2,000 in worthless checks from Ms. Pittman.

Investigators also seized two cameras and at least one computer from Ms. Pittman's Fallin Boulevard home, an investigator said.

Flores said Ms. Pittman originally came to his attention when Christopher Hines, a U.S. Air Force employee, complained that she had fraudulently obtained $16,000 from him on false claims of brain cancer surgery.

Flores said attempts to subpoena Ms. Pittman's medical records were already under way.

Hines originally had gone to a lawyer to inquire about a civil suit, a person familiar with the case said.

The lawyer told Hines to seek police help.

Ms. Pittman allegedly has lied repeatedly to police about her profession and her connection to loans obtained by Hines for claims of brain surgery.

As she did with her victim, Ms. Harrell told police that she was a commercial real estate broker, a person familiar with the case said.

She allegedly told the Air Force employee that she was due for a big commission check with which she could pay off the loaned $16,000, investigators said.

"She told (Hines), have mercy and pity and compassion on me," and then used his money for things other than medical bills, Flores said.