Woman jailed for stealing Grand Haven-area woman's identity

Becky Vargo • Aug 28, 2018 at 10:00 AM

A 21-year-old Holland woman with a history of traffic infractions has been ordered to serve 60 days in jail after being convicted of stealing the identity of a relative’s girlfriend, who lives in Grand Haven Township.

Kayla Ann McKenney-Smith was given credit for one day already served in jail when she was sentenced Monday in Ottawa County Circuit Court. Judge Karen Miedema also ordered McKenney-Smith to pay a $200 fine plus costs and put her on probation for 18 months.

“You’re affecting other people’s lives,” the judge told her.

Miedema noted that the identity theft occurred even after the young woman completed six weeks of treatment.

McKenney-Smith’s attorney, Abraham Gonzalez, said his client’s actions were “foolish,” but that her previous criminal history was a number of misdemeanor convictions — “mostly driving infractions.”

McKenney-Smith told the judge that she was in counseling, had moved to Grand Rapids and was getting ready to start a new job.

“I’m a single mom,” she said. “I’ve got a child who needs me and I need to get my life together.”

When asked by the judge if she had apologized to her victim, McKenney-Smith said she has not had a chance.

The victim said she has struggled a lot over the past year trying to prove that she is not the person with the driving record.

“This is the second time she has done this to me,” the victim said.

The victim said that when she was eight months pregnant, her driver’s license was suspended. She couldn’t secure insurance, so she sold her car and lost her job because she didn’t have transportation.

Although the situation was supposedly resolved, the victim said she again was arrested for driving on a suspended license and had to pay the fine.

“I’m constantly worried about going to jail again for her using my name,” the victim said. “When you Google, her mugshot comes up with my name. ... I know she knows what she’s doing. I want her to learn a lesson.”

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