Exclusive: Mother of woman dubbed the 'obit bandit' says daughter was set up
The mother of a Bronx woman famously dubbed the "obit bandit" spoke exclusively to News 12 to say her daughter was set up and framed for the crimes she now faces decades behind bars for.
Latonia Stewart's shocking case first made headlines for her arrest in 2018. Stewart got more attention again last month when the 30-year-old alleged "funeral burglar" was found guilty by a White Plains jury of burglarizing six Westchester homes while victims attended funerals for their loved ones.
"I don't think she got a fair trial," says Latoya Brown, the defendant's mother. "There's no DNA, no video, nothing that would point her toward these places."
Brown says her daughter was incapable of committing the crimes because she was pregnant and newly postpartum when they took place.
Brown says her daughter was set up and that evidence was staged.
"They said there was stuff just scattered everywhere in her vehicle, and there was absolutely no DNA whatsoever," she says.
The prosecution acknowledged in court that no DNA linked Stewart to the crimes but said stolen jewelry was found in her car, which was allegedly seen on surveillance video during one of the crimes.
They said obituary searches were also recovered from Stewart's phone.
Stewart's attorney tells News 12 he never pointed the finger at police in court but rather toward Stewart's boyfriend, who he believes is primarily responsible for the burglaries but was never charged.
Stewart now faces up to 15 years in prison on each count when she's sentenced Monday, totaling a maximum of 90 years behind bars.
Her attorney and mother say they plan on filing an appeal.
News 12 reached out to Greenburgh police and the Westchester DA's Office for comment on the case but has not heard back.