Roxanne Janel Jones, 34, allegedly bilked a couple from Leavenworth, Kansas, out of thousands of dollars while posing as a pregnant, single mom hoping to give up her children for adoption. Jones also used a false Social Security number, and accepted donations from Christian Family Services in Overland Park, Kansas, according to the charges filed against her in Johnson County court.
Jones was busted in spectacular fashion by a CBS producer posing as someone who wanted to adopt Jones' fictional twins.
According to the CBS investigation, another local couple seeking children, Holly and Mark Gonzales, received a call last month from their adoption attorney informing them that a mom was giving birth to twins who would be available for adoption. Jones was going by a fake name: Kristy Bennet. The couple was put in contact with "Kristy" by phone.
"Kristy" immediately began asking the couple for money for various expenses, raising a red flag. Not long after, the adoption lawyer told the couple that he'd been looking into "Kristy's" background and found no record of her at the doctor's office where she claimed to have been receiving care. The expectant mom could be a con, the attorney warned.
A month later, Jones was calling herself "Cindy Stevens" when she was contacted by an undercover CBS producer, Pat Milton, who pretended to be interested in adopting the twins, stringing Stevens along until she was eventually able to confront her in a Kansas City hotel room on March 16.
Until that date, Jones, pretending to be "Cindy," hit Milton up for money persistently in a total of 120 text messages. She claimed she needed help paying the electric bill, phone bill, food and rent (she was always seemingly on the brink of eviction, according to Milton). Jones claimed that her father had died and she needed money for funeral expenses. One text message from Jones to Milton asked for "675 for rent for March, 100 for gas bill due March, food and other household items such as toilet paper and soap 250, Buss pass for the month, 60." CBS claims to have sent enough money to keep Jones on the hook.
This isn't Jones' first scammy rodeo. In 2006, Jones was convicted for passing a bad check of more than $1,000. The felony charge was reduced to a misdemeanor, and she was put on probation, but Jones failed to appear at subsequent court hearings. Yesterday, Johnson County prosecutors filed a motion to revoke Jones' probation.
Charges in the case related to the Leavenworth couple, whose names are Elizabeth
and Marty Eng, were filed March 15.
Overland Park police are looking for other potential victims of Jones' scams. Detective Dennis Reaser is on the case and can be reached at 913-344-8702.