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Iowa woman pleads guilty to stealing $480,000 from mother-in-law

OGDEN, Iowa (AP) — An Ames woman accused of stealing nearly half a million dollars from her mother-in-law over the course of seven years has pleaded guilty to theft.

Myrna Hockemeier, 66, pleaded guilty to the charge, the Carroll Daily Times Herald reports. In exchange, state prosecutors on Tuesday dropped a more serious charge of ongoing criminal conduct. Hockemeier faces up to 10 years in prison when she’s sentenced at a later date.

Her ex-husband tells the newspaper that Hockemeier obtained a debit card from his mother’s bank back in 2007 and spent the Ogden woman’s life savings of about $484,000 on gambling and clothes. He discovered the theft in 2014 and filed for divorce.

A public defender for Hockemeier did not immediately return a phone message Thursday seeking comment.