BENTONVILLE -- A Siloam Springs woman admitted Monday that she took money from two sets of prospective adoptive parents.
Molita Elcar, 32, pleaded guilty to defrauding a prospective adoptive parent, a Class B felony punishable by a prison sentence ranging from five to 20 years. Elcar received probation, fines and jail time.
A jury trial was to begin today, but the case was resolved by a plea agreement that attorney Rachel Stills reached with deputy prosecutor Carrie Dobbs.
Elcar was arrested May 27, 2014.
Vaughn-Michael Cordes, the attorney representing a couple who sought to adopt Elcar's child, reported to the Benton County sheriff's office in April 2014 that Elcar had signed an agreement with the couple, according to a probable cause affidavit. Elcar received more than $9,000 from Cordes' clients, the affidavit states.
Cordes said Elcar started to receive payments from his law firm from October 2013 through April 2014 to help support the pregnancy, the affidavit states. The money came from the couple, according to court documents.
The couple learned Elcar gave birth on April 17, 2014, the affidavit states.
Records show Elcar also entered into an adoption agreement with another couple and received more than $15,000, according to the probable cause affidavit.
That couple, represented by Woodruff Law Firm, came to the hospital after Elcar gave birth and took the child home, according to court documents. The child remains with the couple.
Circuit Judge Brad Karren approved the plea agreement and Elcar's guilty plea.
She was sentenced to 10 years of state-supervised probation. She also was sentenced to 30 days in the Benton County jail. She must pay $10,000 in victim restitution and $1,920 in court costs.
"My client and the state believe that a fair outcome was reached in this case, considering the complexities that both sides faced," Stills said.
Elcar was taken into custody to begin serving her jail sentence.
Metro on 09/29/2015