Kissimmee woman charged with stolen valor, fraud

A Kissimmee woman was arrested this week on multiple charges, including misrepresenting the military, stemming from a fraud investigation.

Investigators said Vanessa Tesky, 48, bought a new Dodge Ram in 2016 and told the salesman she was a U.S. Air Force employee earning $7,000 a month.

She identified herself with a U.S. uniformed services identification card and a Mississippi driver’s license, a report said.

Although she had poor credit, the salesman worked to accommodate her and let her put down a large down payment to buy the truck.

Investigators said she provided two false checks from a closed USAA account.

She returned to the dealership to pick up the tag and bought $1,100 in accessories for the truck, using the closed account, investigators said.

The dealership was notified in December that Tesky issued false checks from a closed account.

The Chrysler salesperson attempted to contact Tesky about returning the vehicle or paying for the down payment, but Tesky said she was involved in an accident with the vehicle and that the vehicle was in Maryland at a U.S. naval base, detectives said.
Tesky then claimed that the crash was because of faulty equipment and continued to refuse payment. The salesperson attempted to repossess the truck, but eventually called the Polk County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies determined that the military ID card she used at the dealership shows that she is a military dependent, but then learned that Tesly was never in the military, is not a military dependent and should not have been in possession of military identification.

Detectives obtained a warrant for Tesky charging her with scheme to defraud and grand theft.

When deputies tracked her down in Osceola County, they learned that she was in possession of a new Toyota and that she used the same fraud scheme to get the vehicle, a report said.

During an interview with detectives, Tesky said she was not in the U.S. Air Force but said she is a dependent of her ex-husband, who is in the U.S. Air Force. She claimed that she has over $60,000 in a bank account and the check she issued was from the wrong bank account, detectives said.

Investigators found checkbooks from USAA Bank, a military dependent identification card and a letter written to Mullimax Ford in Kissimmee saying that she is a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force.

Tesky was arrested in Osceola County and booked into the Osceola County Jail, and will be transferred to the Polk County Jail.

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