VANDERBILT (KDKA) – A Fayette County woman accused of impersonating a rodeo star pleaded guilty to fraud Thursday.
Assistant U.S. Attorney James Kitchen says 39-year-old Susan Rowan of Vanderbilt pretended to be rodeo star Sherry Cervi in order to get hundreds of cell phones, two homemade saddles and three men to visit her.
He says the Sprint company sent more than 500 phones to her, and lost $432,000 for the phones and service that went unpaid.
Kitchen said she also pretended to be Cervi to defraud a saddle maker from the other end of the state out of two saddles.
Finally, he said she had online relationships with three men who thought she was Cervi, and all three of them flew to Pittsburgh to see her.
Rowan was released on bond, but she would not come to the door of her home. Instead, her mom, Virginia, answered.
- Watch Bob Allen’s report:
KDKA’s David Highfield: “You never saw any of these cell phones or anything?”
Rowan’s Mother: “I saw them. My grandchildren used them, but they were thrown away.”
Highfield: “She didn’t offer any kind of explanation to you, did she?”
Rowan’s Mother: “No.”
The real Sherry Cervi is an Arizona native and 11-time National Finals Rodeo qualifier and two-time world champion, according to press reports.