Fraud suspects in explosion miss courtBy Andrea Koskey
Two people who allegedly pretended to be victims of the deadly San Bruno blast failed to appear in court Monday.
Now the only thing they will receive is $100,000 arrest warrants.
Deonte Bennett, 25, and Niesha Taylor, 25, are accused of trying to obtain fake identification from the Department of Motor Vehicles to fraudulently say their belongings had burned in the fire and obtain services offered to victims.
On Sept. 9, a PG&E natural-gas pipeline exploded in the Glenview neighborhood, killing eight people and destroying 37 homes. Bennett and Taylor were arrested in September on felony charges, including burglary, perjury and filing false documents. The two posted $25,000 bail shortly after their arrests.
Taylor may be in custody in San Francisco on an unrelated charge, Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said.
Two other women were arrested on similar charges. Sonya Smith, 44, and Lisa Justin, 42, both of San Bruno, appeared in San Mateo County Superior Court on Sept. 16 to plead not guilty. Both are still in custody on $100,000 bail and due back in court Nov. 19.
Another woman, 23-year-old Jacqueline Turner, is scheduled to appear in San Mateo County Superior Court on Nov. 4. She is charged with burglary.
Copyright ©2010 San Francisco Examiner. Published 10/26/2010.