Woman accused of selling employers' cellphones on Facebook

Enid Police Department

ENID, Okla. — A 31-year-old Enid woman was charged this week with felony embezzlement after authorities said she sold two cellphones and a smartwatch belonging to her employer.

In addition to the felony embezzlement, Taryn Sandoval also faces a misdemeanor count of false pretense. She faces up to two years in prison, up to a year in county jail and/or a fine not to exceed $5,000 on the felony charge.

Online court records show a warrant for Sandoval's arrested was issued Wednesday, when the charges were filed in Garfield County District Court. Bond on the warrant has been set at $1,000.

According to an affidavit filed in the case, on March 12 Enid Police Department Sgt. Mike Evans went to the AT&T Store, 2401 W. Garriott, on a report of an employee selling store phones for personal gain.

Evans spoke with the store's manager and assistant manager. They said Sandoval was an employee at the store and started work in January, according to the affidavit. Sandoval was given a red Apple iPhone 8+ to use, which is customary for all employees.

The assistant manager said Sandoval told her there was something wrong with the phone and it was malfunctioning, according to the affidavit. The assistant manager said she gave Sandoval a black Samsung S9+ to use. The assistant manager said Sandoval later told her the iPhone was working again and the assistant manager asked for the Samsung back but Sandoval never returned it.

When the assistant manager asked Sandoval about the Samsung phone again, Sandoval said she'd put the Samsung back into the store's inventory and later made other excuses when asked about the phone, according to the affidavit. The assistant manager said Sandoval last worked Feb. 22, called in sick for five work days and had not returned to work since.

When the manager contacted Sandoval about returning to work, Sandoval made a comment she was upset with some of the other employees and was not coming back to work, according to the affidavit. The assistant manager said she emailed Sandoval about returning her uniforms, store keys and phone but Sandoval kept making excuses to not return the items.

The assistant manager said she checked the store's inventory and found the iPhone and Galaxy phones, and a Samsung Galaxy Active2 watch were missing, according to the affidavit. The assistant manager said Sandoval posted a Samsung Galaxy Active2 watch for sale on Facebook.

The assistant manager said she also used the International Mobile Equipment Identity numbers for the iPhone and Galaxy phone, both of which were activated, and spoke with a woman who purchased the Samsung phone from Sandoval, according to the affidavit. The woman told police she saw the phone for sale on Sandoval's Facebook page March 2 and had her husband meet Sandoval to purchase the phone for $300.

Evans also spoke with the man who purchased the iPhone from Sandoval via Facebook, according to the affidavit. He said the phone was posted for sale for $350, he offered Sandoval $250 and Sandoval accepted the offer.

The woman who purchased the Samsung and the man who purchased the iPhone both identified Sandoval as the woman who sold the phones from pictures on Sandoval's Facebook page, according to the affidavit.

On March 13, Officer James McFadden spoke with Sandoval about the investigation, according to the affidavit. He told her he was trying to get items belonging to AT&T back and Sandoval said she had the uniforms and a key but lost the two phones she'd been given.

McFadden told Sandoval he knew she'd sold the phones because of the IMEI numbers were from the phones given to her by the store, according to the affidavit. Sandoval said she must have accidentally sold the phones. Sandoval said she realized about three weeks before she'd sold the wrong phones. She said she did not know what to do so she panicked.

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Rains is police and court reporter for the Enid News & Eagle. Follow him on Twitter, @cassrains.
Have a question about this story? Do you see something we missed? Do you have a story idea for Cass? Send an email to crains@enidnews.com.

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