Woman sentenced to maximum sentence of 10 years for identity theft

Submitted photo.
Sophia Martinez Castillo, 44, of Dallas was sentenced to 10 years in prison by an Ellis County jury on Wednesday, October 28, 2015.

ELLIS COUNTY — On Wednesday, October 28, an Ellis County jury sentenced Sophia Martinez Castillo, 44, of Dallas, Texas, to 10 years in prison and a fine of $10,000 after she was convicted of felony Fraudulent Use or Possession of Identifying Information, a charge commonly referred to as Identify Theft. She was specifically charged with possessing the victim’s name, date of birth, address and social security number.

On May 5, 2014, Castillo, using stolen identification, rented a moving truck and attempted to purchase more than $4,000 worth of shingles from a building supply company in Ennis, Texas. The building supply company suspected a fraud and contacted the Ennis Police Department. Castillo falsely identified herself with the victim’s information to the police. In a twist of fate, there were outstanding warrants for the arrest of Castillo’s victims, which were executed by the police. Only after Castillo was arrested was her true identity established.

A search of the rented moving truck found multiple notebooks that contained the identifying information of several people along with an estimated 100 credit card numbers. Castillo has several prior felony convictions for Forgery, Tampering With a Governmental Record, and Fraudulent Use of Possession of Identifying Information.

Pointing to Castillo’s criminal history, Assistant County & District Attorney Rickey Sipes asked the jury for the maximum sentence. He argued that she had received probation in 2003, plus short prison sentences in 2009 and 20012, from Dallas and Tarrant Counties. “It is now time to send her to prison for the maximum punishment allowed,” he argued. The returned with a maximum sentence after deliberating for only 15 minutes.