Couple accused of realty scam appear before judge - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Victims of realty scam speak out

Joshua Petroze and Kristin Manning Joshua Petroze and Kristin Manning

The northern Kentucky couple accused of masterminding a realty scam went before a judge on Monday.

Kristin Manning, 28, and Joshua Petroze, 33, are charged with burglary and theft for posing as prospective home buyers and stealing from the houses they were shown.

Investigators say the couple would use their one-year old child as a distraction, and then split up to steal valuables. 

The total amount of items stolen by the duo are estimated to be close to $5,000.

"There are some items that were stolen that the sentimental value can never be replaced," said Jay Ashmore, who says he and his wife were victims of the scam.

The couple is trying to sell their Hyde Park home.  But, they say, after a private showing around Thanksgiving to the couple, something wasn't right.

A bowl that haven't used in years stuffed in the back of a cabinet was sitting on a countertop.  Then, a day or two later, a saddening discovery.

"The night before Thanksgiving my wife noticed that a few pieces of her jewelry were missing," said Ashmore.

That includes his wife's wedding ring. But, that's not all.

"A couple weeks later we discovered they also got into some silver flatware," Ashmore added.

The flatware has been passed down through generations. Replacing it, for them, wouldn't have the same meaning, much like replacing a wedding band.

"A wedding ring that's blessed on the day of your wedding, sure you can replace it, but it's not the one that was there that actual day," Ashmore told FOX19.

Ashmore says the police have told him there is a chance some of their items could be recovered.

"It's painful, and it's maddening. We'd love to have the pieces returned to us. We'll see if that happens or not," Ashmore said.

If the Ashmore's have to replace items, they hope to do it through insurance policies.

Copyright 2013 WXIX. All rights reserved.

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