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Loudonville woman admits to stealing $30,000 from close friend

August 21, 2018 05:44 PM

FIRST ON 13: 63-year-old Marla Kellert admitted in Albany County Court that she stole some $30,000 from longtime friend Blake Kirk of Loudonville. 

In front of Judge William Carter, Kellert pled guilty to felony grand larceny. 

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She took the cash in February from the victim's home on Old Niskayuna Road. 

"Absolutely, Kumi, I feel that he has been betrayed by somebody that he thought was a good friend for 20-some years," said Kirk's sister, Carole Pepe.  "And we feel confident that this isn't the first time that she's done this to him, but this time she was caught and I'm grateful for that."

Pepe says Kellert has to be held accountable. 

"I taught for many years and that was the thing I always told my students, my children, and my grandchildren: there is a consequence for every action," said Pepe. 

Police say they found most of the missing cash at Kellert's house on Ross Court in Loudonville, as well as jewelry linked to a crime in Guilderland. 

In court, Kellert handed over a check for Kirk's money that she had spent.

"The victim discovered her in his house when he came home unexpectedly from a doctor's appointment.  I guess that's what stands out is the betrayal of a friend, his trust in her and he didn't see this coming.  And this was very shocking and something I don't think he will ever forget," said Albany County Assistant District Attorney Ben Mastaitis.  

Pepe thinks Kellert should be facing tougher penalties. 

"People that steal money because they have a habit they can't shake is one thing," she said.  "She steals money because she can't afford to live the lifestyle she would like to live."

Under the plea agreement, Kellert will get six months in jail, plus five years felony probation.  

She will be sentenced in October.  
     
 

Credits

Kumi Tucker

Copyright 2018 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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