RIDGWAY — A St. Marys woman is facing several felony charges after she allegedly stole gift cards from CAPSEA, Citizens Against Physical, Sexual and Emotional Abuse and used them at area stores.
Sarah V. Holtzhauser, 24, of St. Marys, is charged with two counts of receiving stolen property and four counts of accessing a device unauthorized by the issuer, both felonies in the third degree, four misdemeanor counts of receiving stolen property and two misdemeanor counts of accessing a device unauthorized by issuer, according to a criminal complaint filed at Magisterial District Judge James Martin’s office Dec. 22.
In June of 2020, it was reported to the Ridgway Borough Police Department that CAPSEA, an organization based in Ridgway, had purchased gift cards from Walmart, Elk County Foods, Sheetz, Dollar General and Subway with CARES Act funding received, a total of $12,200 in gift cards for victims and families.
Staff members were to contact CAPSEA’s director when there was a request for a gift card for someone in need, and they were kept in a locked box, according to the affidavit of probable cause, accessible to CAPSEA employees. In September, an audit of the remaining gift cards was conducted, and there was allegedly $7,175 worth of gift cards unaccounted for.
CAPSEA provided receipts for all of the gift cards purchased. Police obtained receipts, photos and video from Walmart, referencing the missing gift cards. Holtzhauser is allegedly seen in the photos and on video at Walmart using the gift cards, and her vehicle is present in the parking lot at that time, according to the affidavit of probable cause.
Sheetz also provided photos and video of Holtzhauser allegedly in the parking lot and store using gift cards. Representatives of CAPSEA reportedly identified Holtzhauser as the one using the stolen gift cards, as well as her vehicle, according to the affidavit of probable cause.
Police spoke to Holtzhauser’s attorney on Dec. 14, 2020, and told him she was seen on camera using the stolen gift cards.
Holtzhauser’s preliminary hearing is set for Feb. 3, 2021.