Charges dismissed against Ridgeland couple accused in $10,000 fraud case

By LeAnn R. Ralph

MENOMONIE  —  Charges have been dismissed against a Ridgeland couple accused of defrauding a financial institution out of a little more than $10,000.

Shane L. Cutting, 45, and Laminda L. Hanson, 47, were scheduled for an arraignment hearing in Dunn County Circuit Court January 8.

Cutting’s attorney, George E. Miller, filed a motion to dismiss the charges for failure to not file information with the court.

Online court records do not indicate the nature of the untimely information.

Cutting was charged with two felony counts of identity theft and fraud against a financial institution exceeding $10,000 but less than $100,000.

Hanson was charged with one felony count of fraud against a financial institution exceeding $10,000 but less than $100,000.

Judge Smeltzer dismissed the charges against Cutting and Hanson “without prejudice” and the $500 signature bond that was set as bail for each defendant in May of 2017 was vacated.

Without prejudice means the case against Cutting and Hanson could be refiled in the future.

Hanson appeared in court without an attorney. She also appeared for the preliminary hearing in October without counsel.

According to the criminal complaint, on March 7, 2017, an individual contacted the Menomonie police department to say $11,000 had been fraudulently withdrawn from his Royal Credit Union accounts.

According to the alleged victim, Cutting had called RCU March 3 and March 4 and had transferred $10,000 into Cutting’s account and $1,000 into Hanson’s account. The $10,000 was then allegedly transferred out of Cutting’s account into Hanson’s account, and Hanson went to the bank and withdrew the $10,000 on March 3. RCU reversed the money transfer on the $1,000 put into Hanson’s account on March 4, according to the complaint.

The individual who said $10,000 had been fraudulently withdrawn from his bank account told investigators the money was his portion of a construction contract, and he had waited until the end to take his payment.

The individual said he had been awarded a contract in July of 2016 through the Chippewa Valley Housing Authority. During the project, several checks had been issued to pay for materials, wages and subcontractors. He had deposited $10,000 into his savings account and $2,000 into his checking account on March 1, according to the complaint.

When the man went to the Holiday Gas Station in Menomonie to make a purchase on March 6 with his debit card, the card was declined due to insufficient funds. He then used the ATM machine to check his balance and learned both his savings account and his checking account had been depleted.