MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — In a surprise move Denny Hecker’s girlfriend Christi Rowan has decided she will not fight charges that she stole money that belonged to Hecker and her creditors.
Rowan was expected in court Wednesday to answer charges that she continued to use American Express accounts even after a judge ordered the accounts to be seized by the FBI.
Rowan will now have to stay in jail until her sentencing, and she will almost certainly face a much stiffer sentence than the zero to six months she was originally looking at.
Legal experts who asked not to be identified say Rowan’s decision not to go to court and fight the latest bombshell allegations against her are an indication that she had little chance of winning.
Last week Judge Joan Erickson was infuriated by new evidence that after the FBI had seized American Express cards, Rowan continue to use the card numbers to charge luxury items such as a $400 hair appointment.
Last week, Judge Erickson threw out a plea deal that would have let Rowan serve zero to six months for committing bankruptcy and wire fraud.
Now instead of a maximum of six months in prison — Rowan could face a maximum of 10 years. But experts say the likely sentence is less and by not going to court on Wednesday, Rowan faces better odds with both prosecutors and the judge.
Rowan and Hecker remain in separate units in the Sherburne Co. Jail. No sentencing date has been set.
On Monday, the bankruptcy court ordered Rowan to repay $14,000 the court says belongs to her and Hecker’s creditors.