Jocelyn Kirsch and Eddie Anderton, the spoiled preppies who lived a jet-set lifestyle by stealing the identifies and fortunes of their friends and neighbors, were so brazen in their thievery that even an attorney for one of them couldn’t make any excuses for them.
“It doesn’t make a lot of sense,” Ronald Greenblatt, Kirsch’s attorney, told TODAY co-host Meredith Vieira on Friday. “What they did, whether you want to call it brazenness, stupidity, whatever it is, it’s just sad in so many ways to see young people like this that had the life that they were going to do something like this, hurt a lot of people, and really wreck their own futures. It’s just really a devastating, sad thing.”
Dubbed “Bonnie and Clyde” by the tabloids, both come from well-off families and seemed to have promising futures. Kirsch, 22, is a senior at Drexel University, and Anderton, 25, graduated from Penn State with a degree in economics and had recently been fired from his job as a financial analyst.
They lived together in the Belgravia condominiums in Philadelphia, living a glamorous life that took them to Paris, the Caribbean, London and Hawaii.
Slideshow: Accused of ‘Bonnie and Clyde’ spree Police say the couple’s adventures were financed by stolen money and misappropriated credit cards.
“They were like a parasite that infested themselves on the building,” said Philadelphia Police Det. Terry Sweeney of the couple who were finally arrested last week when they went to pick up a shipment of expensive lingerie sent from London and paid for with a neighbor’s credit card.
When police searched the couple’s condo, they found $17,000 in cash, fake IDs, lock picks and a machine used to make them and stolen credit cards. They also found a sort of Dummy’s Guide to cheating.
Investigators say the couple stole an estimated $100,000 over two years and used it to pay for their travels and such luxuries as $2,200 hair extensions for Kirsch.
“She stole my debit card,” Sallie Cook, Kirsch’s former best friend at Drexel, told NBC News. “I hope they do restitution and jail time.”
“I think that it’s just sad,” Greenblatt said, repeating an adjective he used often in talking about Kirsch and Anderton. “I think it’s just a case of people going off, they lose their moral center, and when people lose their moral center, things like this happen. They both come from good, hard-working families – a lot of promise and future that has just been severely damaged by this.”
“Whose idea was it?” Vieira asked, noting that friends of Kirsch’s have reportedly said that she had been a habitual liar and had what they called “sticky fingers.”
“I think it was both of theirs together,” the attorney replied.
“I don’t know if you want to call it mental illness or stupidity,” he said. “I think it goes a little bit deeper, but we’re hoping to get to the bottom of it to come up with a way to figure out what happened. Really, we’re coming forth to tell the truth and say that she’s remorseful and try to get her the help so she can get back on track and recover some semblance of a life after this.”
He took no issue with anything Vieira said about the couple. When she said, “They don’t seem to care about anyone but themselves,” Greenblatt answered, “You’re right.”
But, he said, the arrest – both are out on bail of around $100,000 each – has made Kirsch and Anderton realize what they’ve done.
“They realize that. Their families especially realize this, and they’re devastated by this,” Greenblatt said. “I think they got caught up in something that was above their heads.”
The attorney said he understands that a lot of people want the couple to be punished to the limit of the law and beyond. “What I’m hopeful is, that they’re treated just like anybody else,” he said. “I know that’s tough with the media surge that’s going on right now, but at least that’s my hope.”
He said both would probably accept whatever plea bargain they can get and avoid a trial whose conclusion would be foregone.
“Down the road, that’s where I think it’s going,” he said. “What I have to do, though, is to look at all the charges and make sure they’re fair; make sure there aren’t charges added on just because of the publicity of the case.”
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