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Fast-food worker faked robbery, authorities say

Woman, 56, alleged that she was attacked, robbed at Burger King

POSTED: September 15, 2008 5:00 a.m.
CUMMING — If the employee of a local fast-food restaurant who reported a robbery Tuesday had it her way, she wouldn’t have gotten caught.

As it turned out, however, Monica Montero Lane was arrested Thursday by Forsyth County Sheriff’s deputies and charged with false statement and theft by taking.

Lane, 56, of McEver Road in Flowery Branch is being held at the Forsyth County Detention Center.

Bond has not been set.

The arrest came two days after Lane reported that she had been attacked and robbed near a trash bin outside the Burger King at Atlanta and Buford highways near Cumming.

In the end, sheriff’s Investigator Bill Franco said her story didn’t wash.

"The events she described were not observed on the (store security camera) video, which led to some questions about what happened," Franco said.

Lane told investigators a man approached her from behind at about 6 a.m. Tuesday and hit her over the head with an unknown object.

Lane said the man then ran off after taking money belonging to the restaurant. It was still dark at the time, and there were no witnesses.

Franco said Lane provided vague descriptions of the man and the alleged robbery.

"We collected the item she hit herself in the head with," said Franco, adding that she used a staple gun and then hid it in the trash bin.

Video showed that Lane returned to the bin and attempted to push the staple gun deeper under the trash.

"When we questioned her about the situation, she also advised she had been taking money (from the restaurant) since August," Franco said. "It got out of hand, and she basically took this as a chance to cover herself."

Franco said forensic audits will determine exactly how much money is missing.

Sheriff’s Capt. Paul Taylor said authorities recovered some of the money Lane had reported stolen.

Taylor also said cases of false reports are "aggravating" given the manpower, resources and time wasted investigating them.

Employees of the fast-food restaurant, which straddles a bustling retail corridor, declined to comment on the matter.



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