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Tonya McDowell in ColorLines magazine

by on April 26, 2011

From Colorlines Magazine

A homeless Connecticut mother has been arrested and charged with larceny for allegedly stealing her son’s education from a public school police say he had no right to attend. Tanya McDowell is a 33-year-old Bridgeport resident who used her babysitter’s address in Norwalk, where the schools were better, so her five-year-old son Andres Justin Paches could go to school. A.J. was enrolled in Brookside Elementary School’s kindergarten from September to January. They’ve been living out of her van.

And for her supposed crime, McDowell is facing a 20-year jail sentence for making off with $15,686 in education funds from the Norwalk school district, the Stamford Advocate reported. What’s more, McDowell’s babysitter Ana Rebecca Marques has been evicted from the public housing complex she lived in for helping McDowell. McDowell is set to be arraigned on Wednesday morning.

“I had no idea whatsoever that if you enroll your child in another school district, it becomes a crime,” McDowell told the paper after she was arrested and charged with first-degree larceny.

 

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