Macon – A Macon woman was sentenced to 15 years, five of them in prison, Friday after she pleaded guilty to taking an elderly woman’s purse in a Walmart parking lot last summer.
Cora Lee Trice, 53, pleaded guilty to robbery by sudden snatching during a hearing in Bibb County Superior Court.
The plea was part of a plea bargain without a set sentence. The prosecution asked for 15 years with eight of them in prison.
If the case had gone to trial, prosecutor Jonathan Gordon would have presented evidence showing:
A then-74-year-old woman finished shopping at the Walmart on Harrison Road just before 1:30 p.m. on July 11, 2017. Trice approached the woman in the parking lot and asked her for money. The woman said she couldn’t help Trice, but Trice didn’t walk away.
After loading her groceries in the car, the woman realized she’d locked her purse and keys inside the car. Only the rear hatch remained open. She was physically unable to crawl in thru the rear hatch to retrieve her keys or open a door.
Trice offered to help. She retrieved the keys and gave them to the woman. Trice then headed off on foot. Soon the woman realized her purse was missing. She saw Trice stuff it into a Walmart bag and called for help.
Authorities later found Trice hiding underneath a bridge connecting the Walmart parking lot to a Walmart gas station. They didn’t find the woman’s purse.
An investigator reviewed Trice’s jail phone calls and discovered she’d talked with her fiancé and told him where to find the purse. After her fiancé found the purse, Trice told him to put the money he found inside onto her account at the jail.
Trice’s fiancé was charged with theft by receiving and was prosecuted in Bibb County State Court.
Speaking after the hearing, Macon Judicial Circuit District Attorney David Cooke said, “Ms. Trice preyed upon a vulnerable elderly woman to satisfy her own greed. As she spends the next five years in a prison cell, she can ask herself if the profit was worth it.”
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Contact: Amy Leigh Womack