Police: Woman fakes assault to cover up lost money

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by CRAIG CIVALE / WFAA-TV

wfaa.com

Posted on December 3, 2009 at 1:55 AM

Updated Thursday, Dec 3 at 6:11 PM

BRIDGEPORT, Texas - Police said surveillance video proves a woman fabricated a story about a Bridgeport assault, and now she has been charged for allegedly lying.

Concern spread throughout Wise County after 53-year-old Sherill Spink reported she was assaulted and robbed by a Hispanic male who pulled her over Tuesday.

The reports led to newspaper stories and a police search for the suspect. But, now police said they found proof the incident never happened.

"She was very believable," said Sgt. Todd Low, Bridgeport Police Department. "The corporal on the scene said she was crying, upset, shaking, very, very distraught."

Spink claimed her attacker was driving a car with a spare tire, which led police on a search.

"You're putting officers in danger, putting the citizens in danger, plus you're taking manpower off the streets," he said.

Authorities said they believed Spink's story until they watched video from security cameras at a local business. The video showed Spink parked in a car, but at no time does it show another vehicle or anybody flagging her down to pull her over. One neighbor said Spink's parked car actually made him a bit curious.

"She's been sitting there 30 minutes," said Leon O'Dell, an area resident who said he spotted Spink on his block.

O'Dell said he too never saw another person.

Police believe the report was part of an elaborate hoax to try and hide an embarrassing $500 mistake.

"She had lost money out of her purse and was afraid to tell anybody about it," Low said.

E-mail ccivale@wfaa.com

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