A former principal at a middle school in Columbus City Schools who stole a wallet in Delaware has been placed in an intervention program.
Nicole C. Edwards, 40, of Westerville was shopping at the Goodwill store in Delaware on July 9, 2015, when she noticed another shopper, Ashley Hines, 21, of Ashley, had put her wallet on the counter and went back to grab an item. According to the police who reviewed the security video, Edwards then took the wallet and looked inside before placing it in her purse and leaving the store.
She entered a guilty plea to a charge of theft in Delaware County Common Pleas Court on April 28 and was put in an intervention program.
Hines told police she had just gone to the bank and the wallet contained $210 in cash as well as personal identification cards, credit cards and gift cards.
Police reviewed security footage and noted that Edwards had used her own credit card at the store before the theft. Police then used the credit card to make contact with Edwards, who called an attorney before speaking to police.
According to the police report, Edwards’ attorney asked police if they would be interested in Edwards paying restitution instead of facing criminal charges and police said the case would be presented to the grand jury for felony charges.
Edwards was indicted on a charge of theft, a fifth-degree felony, on Dec. 4.
On April 28, she signed an agreement with prosecutors and pleaded guilty to the theft charge.
According to court documents, Delaware County Common Pleas Judge Everett Krueger ruled that she be placed in an invention program in lieu of conviction after “the court found that … at the time of the offense, defendant had a mental illness or intellectual disability which was a factor leading to the offense.” The entry goes on to state that invention would “substantially” reduce the likelihood of future criminal activity.
At the time of the occurrence, Edwards was reportedly a principal at Johnson Park Middle School in Columbus City Schools. She has reportedly resigned.
Edwards was also ordered to pay $264 in restitution to Hines.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.