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Four convicted in scheme to roll back odometers to mislead customers about vehicles' mileage

Norwalk Reflector Staff • Nov 5, 2012 at 3:12 PM

A judge found a husband and his wife guilty of hundreds of felonies in an odometer fraud case in Cuyahoga County.

The couple was convicted of 257 charges of theft, forgery, and tampering with an odometer, among other crimes. They were ordered to pay $58,574 in restitution.

They were involved in a scheme to roll back vehicle odometers to mislead customers about the mileage on the vehicles they purchased.

The Bureau of Motor Vehicles' Investigations Section and Ohio State Highway Patrol investigated the case for more than a year.

In May, a grand jury indicted the couple and two other people on 145 counts, most counts involving charges against multiple people. Last week, three of the four suspects pleaded guilty or no contest to charges, closing the case with 257 total convictions:

· Michael Mankins, 38 of Middleburg Heights, the former manager of R&M Auto Service & Sales in Cleveland, pleaded no contest and was found guilty of 54 charges of tampering with records, 54 charges of forgery, 18 charges of tampering with an odometer, 18 charges of transferring a vehicle with a tampered odometer and three charges of theft, all felonies. He reimbursed the Akron Auto Auction -- a victim of the crimes -- $80,000 and was ordered to pay $57,574 in restitution to other victims.

· Kimberly Mankins, 41 of Middleburg Heights, Michael Mankins' wife, pleaded no contest and was found guilty of 54 charges of forgery and 54 charges of tampering with records, all felonies.

· Samuel Mankins, 32 of Cleveland, Michael Mankins' brother, was convicted of menacing, a misdemeanor, and was sentenced to 30 days in jail and ordered to pay $150 in court costs.

· John Childrey, 45 of Brookpark, previously was found guilty of falsification, a misdemeanor, on August 10, 2012, and was sentenced to 60 days in jail, which was suspended. He was ordered to pay restitution of $500.

The sentencing of Michael and Kimberly Mankins will take place at 11 a.m. Nov. 29.

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