A convicted burglar who was captured after a nationwide manhunt was sentenced to 30 months in state prison last week.
Former Graeagle resident Rebecca Victoria Loretz, 38, was sentenced Tuesday, May 22, by Judge Carl F. Bryan in Plumas County Superior Court.
Loretz, who faced a potential eight years in prison, received a lighter sentence from the visiting judge. Bryan said that Loretz’s lack of a criminal record and the fact that her crimes occurred relatively close together against people she knew outweighed her continuing pattern of criminality and the damage she caused.
Loretz is expected to serve about half of the 30 months. She also received custody credit for 180 days served.
Plumas County District Attorney David Hollister said he was disappointed about the relatively light sentence.
“While I respect the process and ruling by the visiting judge, the sentence was inconsistent with the continued and consistent criminality of the defendant,” Hollister said.
Hollister said he was pleased to know that Loretz would be serving her time in state prison.
“She will be released with two ‘strike’ convictions on her record,” Hollister said, adding that could “dissuade her from any future crimes.”
Loretz was convicted by a Plumas County jury Nov. 2, 2011, on several felony counts, including residential burglary and receiving stolen property.
The day the jury was set to render its decision, Loretz failed to show up at the Plumas County courthouse. Instead, she attempted suicide in her Sparks apartment.
After being released from Reno Renown Regional Medical Center Nov. 11, 2011, Loretz failed to show up at a Reno mental hospital.
After nearly four months on the run, she was caught and arrested Feb. 22 in Los Angeles by United States marshals, who were working in close contact with Plumas County’s sheriff and district attorney.
Loretz’s stepmother, Zoe Wolf, said in November 2011 that Loretz’s failed attempt to kill herself was “all a big ploy.”
“Trust me,” Wolf said. “This woman is the drama queen of the century. She’s doing everything she can to keep from going to prison.”
Wolf and her husband, Art Wolf, who live in Graeagle, were among Loretz’s victims.
Loretz burglarized the Wolfs’ home and later stole property from a home she was renting.
In late 2009, after months of dissension with Art Wolf, Loretz was served with a move-out order forcing her to leave her father’s Graeagle residence.
After Loretz moved out and Wolf took possession of the home, he left town for the weekend.
That’s when Loretz broke into Wolf’s house and stole more than $10,000 worth of items. Among the items she took were her deceased mother’s ashes.
Months later, Loretz and her husband, Martin Loretz, rented another house in Graeagle.
While there, Loretz stole approximately $50,000 worth of the homeowner’s property.
In an effort to hide her crime, Loretz called the police and reported the home had been burglarized while she was away.
About a month after the reported burglary, the Plumas County Sheriff’s Office served Loretz with search warrants.
Deputies and detectives searched Graeagle Mini Storage units rented by Loretz. They also searched the home Loretz and her husband were renting at the time.
The searches turned up much of the stolen property from both of Loretz’s burglaries.
Martin Loretz, who faced charges similar to those of his wife, pleaded guilty Nov. 10, 2011, to one felony count of first-degree burglary.
He was sentenced Jan. 27 to two years in state prison.
At her sentencing, Rebecca Loretz offered an apology to her victims and said that any wrongdoing on her part was caused by a 20-year drug addiction.
Her jury trial lasted six days. It featured testimony of 14 witnesses, including herself.
Loretz contended at the time that she was not responsible for the burglaries. She said the items stolen were either hers to begin with, or were taken by some other person.
Hollister said it was “a particularly difficult and trying case for the victims and the investigating officers.”
“(Loretz) perpetrated crimes not only based on financial motivation but also out of spite,” Hollister said. “In an effort to conceal her criminality, the defendant made numerous false complaints about the deputies she encountered.”
Hollister noted his appreciation of the efforts of Plumas County Sheriff’s Detective Mike Smith, District Attorney Investigative Assistant Jessica Beatley, the Washoe County District Attorney’s Office and the United States Marshals Office in tracking and apprehending Loretz.
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