A woman was to be arraigned today for stealing over $200,000 from an Irvine victim by claiming to be a psychic working to rid the victim of a curse inherited while in her mother’s womb.
Lisa Debbie Adams, 35, Los Angeles, is charged with 32 felony counts of second degree commercial burglary, two felony counts of credit fraud, one felony count of grand theft, and one felony count of dissuading a witness with sentencing enhancements for aggravated white collar crime over $100,000 and property loss over $200,000.
If convicted, she faces a maximum sentence of 30 years and four months in state prison.
Adams is being held on $250,000 bail and must prove the money is from a legal and legitimate source before posting bond. She was expected to be arraigned today at the Central Jail in Santa Ana.
In June 2008, Adams is accused of approaching the 37-year-old female victim, who was walking in West Hollywood with her friends and carrying an advertisement for a psychic. Adams is accused of identifying herself as a psychic and instructing the victim to make an appointment for a “cleansing” to get rid of her “darkness.”
After learning that the victim had $100,000 in an IRA, the defendant is accused of meeting on several occasions with the victim in Adams’ West Hollywood apartment and the victim’s Irvine workplace.
Between June 2008 and August 2009, Adams is accused of telling the victim that she suffered a curse that had been placed on her mother’s womb. She is accused of instructing the victim to withdraw various amounts of money, as much as $96,000 at one time, in order to “cleanse” her of the curse. Adams is accused of claiming to the victim that she was working and performing meditations and rituals to rid the victim of her “evil.”
When the victim informed Adams that she no longer wanted to work together, Adams responded that they couldn’t stop now that they had started and the victim and victim’s family would be in danger of the curse if she didn’t follow the defendant’s instructions. The victim continued to comply for fear that her family would be in danger.
In addition to the cash withdrawals, Adams is accused of having the victim buy $30,000 in gold bars to make a “shield” for protection and open several credit card accounts to purchase over $100,000 in luxury items and gifts to “ward off evil” including clothing, furniture, electronics, accessories, and jewelry. Adams is also accused of convincing her to purchase a Mercedes convertible, for which she could not afford the payments and had to sell back to the dealership at a $5,000 loss.
In August 2009, Jane Doe reported the defendant to the Irvine Police Department (IPD), who investigated this case. Adams was arrested by IPD April 15, 2011, at her residence.
Orange County Deputy District Attorney Matt Lockhart of the Major Fraud Unit is prosecuting this case.