A Girard woman has been ordered to get treatment in lieu of conviction after pleading guilty to falsifying military documents in a failed attempt to get veteran’s benefits.
Shirley Doughty, 55, of Wilson Avenue, pleaded guilty earlier in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court to attempted tampering with records.
On Thursday, Judge Ronald Rice ordered her to undergo a one-year treatment program, including counseling at the Veterans Affairs clinic, to take all medications prescribed and use no illegal drugs.
If she completes the program successfully, no felony conviction will exist on her record.
Maj. Tom Stewart of the Trumbull County Sheriff’s Office said he investigated a complaint from the Trumbull County Veterans Affairs office on North Park Avenue regarding paperwork she filled out.
Doughty applied for aid for her children and for help with her utility bills, Stewart said. She supplied the Veterans Affairs office with a copy of her discharge papers indicating she had served in the U.S. military in Iraq, had been wounded, had received a Purple Heart medal and had been honorably discharged.
None of those things was true, though she did serve in the military, Stewart said.
The alterations to her discharge papers were fairly obvious because of a signature being in the wrong place and other issues. She also gave incorrect information about her children, such as birth date, Stewart said.
She was not approved for the benefits, Stewart said.
When he went to her house to speak to her, Stewart discovered that she had Purple Heart license plates, and he turned that information over to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stewart said.