Baudette Woman Accused Of Theft From Missing Boaters Fund
BAUDETTE (AP) — A Baudette woman is accused of stealing from a fund she set up for the families of three fishermen who went missing on Lake of the Woods.
Twenty-eight-year-old Retina LaValla was charged Tuesday with two counts of theft. The Lake of the Woods County sheriff's office says she was flown to a Bemidji hospital after being detained Tuesday night.
LaValla set up a GoFundMe page to help the families of the missing fishermen. She's accused of taking money meant to help the families pay for the search and funeral expenses.
The three men were reported missing after their capsized boat was found Oct. 3. The bodies of Justin Haugtvedt and Cody Ostendorf were found in October. Keith Ayers remains missing.
Authorities began looking into LaValla after Ayers' mother reported a possible theft in January.
Court records do not list an attorney who could comment for LaValla.