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Paralegal and Fugitive Hides in Plain Sight for over a Decade

If it were a crime in Louisiana not to show up to jail as ordered, New Orleans resident Linda Jean Doria would be in more trouble than she already is.

But simply not showing up to jail isn’t a criminal offense, and last month Doria started serving the four-year sentence for three fraud charges she initially plead guilty to in April 2000. reports that until August 2011, Doria was working as a paralegal for two law firms, and living quietly with her son and his girlfriend, only a few miles from where she lived in 2000 – using her real name the entire time.

After she was given a month to get her affairs in order, Doria didn’t report to jail in 2000 because she didn’t want her then 10-year old son to become a ward of the state. She was finally apprehended after a local state trooper was assigned to serve a stack of fugitive arrest warrants.

The same woman who plead guilty to stealing credit card applications out of mailboxes and using others’ credit to buy groceries, car parts and clothing, stayed out of trouble for 11 years and quietly raised her son, now 21 and a college student, expecting to be caught anytime.

I don’t envy Doria, originally sentenced to four years of hard labor for her crimes. But as someone who was a single mom for a long time, I surely understand what she did. Living under the fear of constant arrest, with no one to care for her minor child, could not have been a picnic.

What say you guys? Would you have done the same (or thought about it real hard) if you were the sole support for your children, or would you have immediately reported to do the time for your crime?


2 Responses to Paralegal and Fugitive Hides in Plain Sight for over a Decade

  1. I'm a single mom and if I had NO ONE to care for my children, than I would consider it; however, if I did do it, I think I would feel so guilty that I'd have to turn myself in as soon as my child turned 18 and was okay on their own.

  2. Rachelle, I don't know that I could have left my only child alone to fend for himself either, but I can't imagine living with the terror of discovery all those years. It'd almost be a relief to be apprehended – if that's what you call sort of accidentally stumbling over a fugitive ;P

    I'd love to hear the rest of the story, i.e. how she entered the paralegal field and successfully raised her son, after making what sounds like some pretty bad decisions a decade or more ago.

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