View Full Version : Mom charged with stealing identity of soldier son

06-10-2005, 03:24 PM
Mom charged with stealing identity of soldier son

June 9, 2005

Associated Press Writer

PORTLAND, Ore. - An Oregon National Guardsman who recently returned from a long tour of duty in Iraq was met with a rude surprise - someone had withdrawn more than $10,000 from his bank account without his knowledge.

Even worse: When police eventually arrested the suspect, it was his mother.

Now, Eugene resident Eleanor Alloway, 51, is facing charges of aggravated theft, identity theft, and fraudulent use of a credit card. Her first court appearance is scheduled for June 23.

Bank surveillance images showed her repeatedly withdrawing money using her son's ATM card, according to Eugene police spokeswoman Kerry Delf.

Authorities think her son's ATM card and pin number came in the mail while he was in Iraq with the 162nd Battalion, which is headquartered in Cottage Grove, Delf said.

The soldier's name was not released, at his request, said Eugene police detective Doug Jordan, an investigator in the agency's financial crimes unit.

Alloway showed little remorse when questioned by police, Jordan said.

"She was not emotional at all," Jordan said. "(There was no) 'I am so sorry I did this, I know it was wrong.' She was very stoic."

Alloway told police that she used the money for video poker, electronic entertainment devices, medical expenses and daily living expenses. She is not being held at the Lane County Jail because of space and financial constraints; instead, she was cited and released, police said.

Any sentence for Alloway could depend in part on her previous criminal record, which Jordan described as "pretty minor, not a property crime or anything."

Kay Fristad, a spokeswoman for the Oregon National Guard, said she had heard of active soldiers being victims of identity theft, but not by their family members.

"You know, I guess anything is possible, if she was checking his mail," Fristad said. "I haven't heard of any other such instances in the Guard."

The 162nd returned in April from Iraq, where they were stationed near Baghdad, going door-to-door to search out insurgents and patrolling for roadside bombs, Fristad said.

Jordan said the bank, Northwest Community Credit Union in Eugene, was able to reimburse the soldier's money.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)