Pen used as a 'pistol'


WESTMINSTER -- When he found a 22-year-old woman guilty of three counts of bad checks, Circuit Judge Raymond E. Beck Sr. told her she used "a pen like someone uses a pistol."

Victoria Cunningham, was found guilty of writing three bad checks at county grocery stores last year after she agreed to plead not guilty but accept the state's version of the facts.

One of the checks was for $224 at George's Super Thrift in Eldersburg, another was for $296 at the Westminster Co-Op grocery store, and the third was for $132 at Millers Food Market.

The three convictions are the latest in a string of bad checks written over the last 12 months and totaling more than $3,000, court records show.

"This is like looking at a one-woman crime wave," Beck said. He will sentence her in August.

The woman said that the bounced checks stem "from a tough period" in her life, and that she intends to continue paying the victims restitution.

She also wants to move to Oklahoma, to be closer to the father of her child, she told the judge.

"She's going to make restitution to the victims here before she makes victims elsewhere," Beck said. He turned to her and said, "You should have all of your pens broken."

Cunningham faces additional bad check charges in Ocean City.

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