Foster Mom Accused Of Stealing Toys Defending Herself - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Foster Mom Accused Of Stealing Toys Defending Herself

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A 73-year-old foster mother who faces four years in state prison if convicted of taking thousands of toys donated for children and selling them for her own benefit reiterated her innocence today.

Virginia Kelly faces charges of grand theft and embezzlement and is free on her own recognizance.

The prosecution alleges that Kelly hoarded 11,000 toys in three locations and sold them herself or had others sell them for her.

The toys were donated by Toys for Tots and other charities and Kelly, as president of the Latino Foster Parent Association, was supposed to have distributed the gifts to needy children.

At a news conference today, she claimed she received so many toys she couldn't give them away fast enough.

"I'm not guilty of anything," she told a local television station. "I'm innocent and I'm trying to help my community."

After Kelly's initial court appearance last week, defense attorney Tom Matthews portrayed his client as a champion volunteer who cared for many foster children. He said many organizations where she'd tried to disseminate the toys had restrictions on the types of items they could receive.

The allegation that she would turn to crime at her age was absurd, Matthews said.

Deputy District Attorney Chris Ryan said police raided the places where the toys were kept. However, she did not reveal the evidence that allegedly ties the defendant to sales of the gifts.

Kelly is scheduled to return to court on May 14.

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