Birmingham man pleads guilty for fraud on fallen Huntsville Police Officer’s memorial fund

Birmingham man pleads guilty for fraud on fallen Huntsville Police Officer’s memorial fund
Devonte Lemond Hammonds of Birmingham (Source: JEFFERSON COUNTY JAIL)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WAFF) - Devonte Lemond Hammonds of Birmingham pleaded guilty Friday to fraud on customers of the U.S. Postal Service, and fraud on the memorial fund set up to provide aid to the family of a fallen Huntsville Police officer.

In December 2019, Hammonds fraudulently planned to take money from the Billy Clardy Memorial Fund.  Clardy was a Huntsville Police officer killed in the line of duty in 2019.  After Officer Clardy’s death, a memorial fund was established to collect contributions and provide aid to his family.

According to a release form the Alabama Department of Justice, Hammonds, 27, pleaded guilty to one count of access device fraud and one count of wire fraud.

According to the plea agreement, Hammonds used the identity of another person to open a bank account and transfer funds from the Memorial Fund bank account to a fake account for his own use.

The investigation proved Hammonds used the U.S. Postal Service website to reroute mail from numerous U.S. Postal Service customers to an addresses in Birmingham that he could access, he then used the rerouted mail to find personal information of those customers, and used that information to pay bills, make purchases, and open new accounts.

The maximum penalty for access device fraud is ten years in prison and a $250,000 fine.  The maximum penalty for wire fraud affecting a financial institution is thirty years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

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