Elderly woman's stolen ring recovered; suspect arrested

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By Alicia Barron By Alicia Barron
Jennifer White By Jennifer Thomas Jennifer White By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX - Phoenix police have recovered a wedding ring stolen from an elderly woman and have a suspect in custody.

The parents of the woman accused of robbing an elderly woman tell 3TV they turned in their daughter after seeing her picture on television.

The parents say they are devastated and say this is not the daughter they raised. She went through a tragedy a few years ago and turned to drugs. Ever since then they say she has been destroying her life.

Diane Froese, 80, lost her husband of more than 55 years six years ago and on Mother's Day she lost her wedding ring.

Police say a young woman she briefly met at a Safeway stole it right off her finger and now 3TV has learned that woman is Jennifer White, 29. Police said she is already in jail for unrelated offenses.

Her mother told 3TV, "This is not Jenny. She's a good person. This is the addict that did this."

White's mother told 3TV her daughter became a heroin addict three years ago.

"Her sister died of an accidental death and she found her dead in her apartment and she was the first one to come upon her and she had to call me to tell me," White's mother said. "So, she just hasn't been the same."

Still, when White’s mother saw her on television for this crime, she called police and turned her in. "We've already lost one daughter, and now we are going to lose another."

While Froese lost a wedding ring, she says she has not lost hope in White.

"I just sensed a little good streak in her," Froese. "It's there, but she's made a lot of mistakes. So I hope that she learns from them and doesn't ever do this, anything like this, again."

White's mom says she believes her daughter pawned the ring.

Phoenix police Officer Luis Samudio said White was interviewed Thursday and made certain admission that, coupled with information received from tipsters, led to her arrest. She was taken back to the Maricopa County Jail and will be charged with strong armed robbery.

Samudio said Froese's ring has been recovered and will be returned to her as soon as the investigation is over. Police did not release details of how or where the ring was found.