A serial scam artist is behind bars, and many victims are hopeful that she will finally stay there. Loreal Stroud is accused of conning people all over the state, but it was old traffic tickets that led to her latest arrest.
Stroud was arrested on an outstanding warrant out of Atoka County for failing to pay for her sixth offense of driving with a suspended license. But she has a much longer criminal history for fraud, and some of her victims orchestrated this plan to keep her from striking again.
Word spread quickly when Loreal Stroud showed up in Tishomingo last month.
“We started to realize we’d all been taken for the same thing,” Dairy Queen owner Kristie Cannon told KXII.
She reportedly offers to print products for small businesses, takes the owners' money and delivers substandard work that is not what they requested. Kim Stepp won a court case against Stroud for $700 earlier this year. She still has not been paid.
Stepp tells KXII, “The reason she keeps getting by with this is because people just say, oh well, I got took.”
Stepp reached out to Marshall County to arrest Stroud on the traffic warrant from Atoka County, where she remains in jail this week with a $3,695 cash-only bond. Her victims hope she stays there, but most of the outstanding cases against her are misdemeanors.
Rep. George Young (D-Oklahoma City) says district attorneys have the power to change that, which has now happened in Major County. Stroud faced eight misdemeanor charges there, which were combined into one felony case for her con game. She is set to appear in Major County court on December 14.
A judge in Payne County has also revoked a one year suspended sentence for one of Stroud’s misdemeanors, due to her subsequent arrests, so she may do time there. She is set to appear in Payne County court for a separate misdemeanor case on December 12.
Plus, Bryan County is scheduled to seize $945 in assets from Stroud on Dec. 13 to award damages to a victim there.
Young says this kind of action is what it will take to protect future victims.
“I don’t care how small it is,” he says, “let’s report this lady every time this happens. If we can get the preponderance up, then the district attorneys have some leeway.”
Each misdemeanor is punishable by up to one year in prison or $1,000 in fines, but each felony is punishable by up to ten years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Investigators urge any victims of Loreal Stroud to come forward with detailed information about your case. You can also report your losses to the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Unit, which would allow for a statewide investigation. Contact the CPU at (405) 521-2029 or ConsumerProtection@oag.ok.gov.