A 26-year-old Fredonia woman who stole people’s credit cards while they were at the Feith Family Ozaukee YMCA in Saukville and used them to buy hundreds of dollars in merchandise was sentenced to 232 days in jail.
Reserve Judge Joseph McCormack withheld a four-year sentence, then ordered Zukaitis to serve the jail time — which, if combined with the time she served before sentencing, adds up to one year — as well as four years probation.
Zukaitis was also ordered to pay $1,658 in restitution, undergo an alcohol and drug assessment, complete any required treatment, maintain absolute sobriety and undergo random testing.
“I’ve just feel I’ve learned a lesson,” Zukaitis said during the July 15 sentencing. “I know I can do this. I know sobriety will have to come first, and I’m willing to do what it takes.”
She told McCormack that while in jail, she pursued her education, completing work to obtain her high school diploma, and wants to enroll in Milwaukee Area Technical College.
Assistant District Attorney Patti Wabitsch told the judge that a jail sentence would help Zukaitis, who she said has struggled with drug addiction, kick the habit for good.
Zukaitis’ attorney Daryl Laatsch acknowledged her struggle, but said she has made changes to her life and has found a support system that will help make permanent changes to her life.
But McCormack noted that Zukaitis’ crimes weren’t victimless, saying they caused “heartaches and disappointments for other people who have no fault on their shoulders.”
He read an impact statement from one of Zukaitis’ victims, a man who took his son to the YMCA for weekly water therapy sessions when his wallet, credit and debit cards, Social Security card, driver’s license, and phone were taken from a bag in a handicapped changing room.
“It is crushing to have this happen while I was trying to help my son get better,” the man wrote. “I was robbed of everything of value.”
The cards were used to try to purchase $700 in items from Walmart, he wrote.
Zukaitis pleaded guilty in May to two felony counts of identity theft for financial gain and misdemeanor counts of thefts and bail jumping.
Three other charges were dismissed.
According to the criminal complaint, Zukaitis’ crimes date to March, when two women and a man reported their credit and bank cards were stolen while they were at the YMCA.
One woman’s cards were used to make $975 of purchases at several stores, and the other woman’s card was used to make $531 in purchases at Walmart.
Zukaitis was charged with bail jumping because she was free on $200 bail on misdemeanor charges of operating a vehicle without the owner’s consent and theft when she stole the credit cards.
McCormack sentenced Zukaitis to two years probation on these charges. This sentence will run concurrently with the identity theft case.