Former Napa Police Department dispatcher Dannille Vanderpool pleaded guilty in Napa County Superior Court today to one count of grand theft regarding her taking money donated for her recovery from cancer she did not have.Vanderpool, 29, faces 180 days in the Napa County jail as part of the plea agreement, her attorney Seth Chazin said. Sentencing is scheduled for Sept.17.Vanderpool’s preliminary hearing on more than a dozen charges was scheduled to start Friday.The California Attorney General’s Office charged her in April with 13 grand felony counts alleging she took more than $50,000 from a fund for her cancer recovery and financial support. Chazin said at the time his client had no intention to defraud the contributors, many of them law enforcement agencies. Chazin said Vanderpool made it known in 2001 she had ovarian cancer. “Not until October 2007 did people offer money,” Chazin said in April.Chazin said this afternoon that Vanderpool is “very remorseful for what she did and definitely wants to make full restitution.”He said Vanderpool “suffers from several significant mental disorders that contributed to her committing the crime.”The complaint alleged the thefts occurred between Oct. 10, 2007, and Jan. 25, 2009. Vanderpool also was charged with one count each of forgery and identity theft.Among the contributors to the fund were the Napa Fire Fighters Association, which gave $11,711; the Napa Police Officers Association, which gave $5,800; the Women’s Auxiliary Corporation, which gave $3,100; and the Napa Deputy Sheriff’s Association, which gave $1,000, according to the criminal complaint.Donations also were made by Santa Rosa, Rohnert Park, Concord and Calistoga police. The complaint alleges Vanderpool took $10,000 from the trust on Oct. 26, 2007. Napa police started a criminal investigation after they received information about possible wrongdoing by Vanderpool. According to the complaint form by Napa police investigator Ron Appel filed with the Napa County criminal justice system against Vanderpool, during the calendar years 2006 through 2009 Vanderpool claimed to have terminal cancer.”The City of Napa along with numerous businesses, individuals and non-profit organizations donated money, time and services and labor to Dannille Vanderpool on the belief perpetuated by Dannille Vanderpool that she had cancer,” the complaint states.”Evidence obtained through search warrants revealed that Vanderpool never had or suffered from cancer. When interviewed, Dannille Vanderpool admitted to lying about her illness while accepting donations which totaled into the tens of thousands of dollars,” the Police Department’s complaint states. Vanderpool was hired as a fulltime public safety dispatcher on Jan. 1, 2005, and left her job on Jan. 26, 2009.Vanderpool entered her plea before Judge Francisca Tisher. Deputy state Attorney General Joyce Blair was not immediately available for comment this afternoon.
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