PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, MICH. - A gas station clerk police say banged her head into a bathroom wall to support a claim she was robbed of $6,000 is heading to trial on three charges, including false report of a felony.
The injuries to 40-year-old Lisa Victoria Niswonger were genuine; they just didn’t happen the way she claimed, according to Kent County Sheriff’s Sgt. Joel Roon.
"She initially said she was assaulted in a robbery,’’ Roon said. “She actually smashed her head against the bathroom wall approximately 10 times.’’
Niswonger told police she was assaulted July 3 when she entered an outside bathroom at the Citgo station at 2770 Ten Mile Road at the corner of Belmont Avenue NE in Kent County’s Plainfield Township.
Niswonger said she was struck in the head with an unknown item “and stunned by an unknown person who stole the money bag containing money,’’ according to court documents. “Niswonger then entered back into the gas station and told her co-worker that she had been robbed.’’
When she came back inside, Niswonger removed the red shirt she was wearing. Deputies found drug paraphernalia and a white powdery substance inside the shirt, court records show. The powder tested positive for methamphetamine, police said.
After being treated at the hospital, a Kent County detective questioned Niswonger about the robbery. She admitted that she and a friend conspired to stage the robbery and steal money from the gas station, court records show.
“Niswonger admitted and confessed that her initial statement was false and admitted that she was never robbed and admitted that her injuries were self-inflicted,’’ deputy Gary Vickery wrote in a probable cause affidavit.
Niswonger was charged with false report of a felony, which is punishable by up to four years in prison, and embezzlement of between $1,000 and $20,000, which carries a five-year term. She is also charged with possession of methamphetamine, a 10-year offense.
Niswonger waived a preliminary hearing this week in 63rd District Court, sending the case to Kent County Circuit Court.
Police say additional arrests could be forthcoming. Niswonger, who lists a Cedar Springs address, is being held in the Kent County Jail on a $30,000 bond.
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