Historic Northeast ‘flop house’ perpetrator pleads guilty

Northeast News

September 22, 2016

KANSAS CITY, Missouri – A man who once operated a flop house in the 400 block of Gladstone Boulevard pleaded guilty in federal court this week to charges including conspiracy to commit bank fraud, possession of counterfeit securities, possession of stolen mail, and identity theft.

Tyler Sutton

Tyler Sutton

Tyler Sutton, 54, also plead guilty to two counts of aggravated identity theft. For the conspiracy charge, Sutton faces five years in federal prison without the possibility of parole. He’s also facing a mandatory two-year consecutive sentence in federal prison for the aggravated identity theft charge. Before his arrest, Sutton had been a property manager in the Scarritt Renaissance neighborhood. He admitted to using the property as a home base for criminal activity, which included offering cash and/or drugs to those who brought him stolen mail, addresses, and credit card information. Sutton and his co-conspirators used the stolen information to make counterfeit checks that were subsequently cashed at retail stores and financial institutions.

When Sutton was arrested on April 29, 2015, Scarritt Renaissance Neighborhood Association President Leslie Caplan told the Northeast News that it was a banner day for the community, as the residence Sutton operated out of had become a hotbed for drugs and other illegal activity.

“This is all due to the vigilance of our residents and the team effort we employed with the officers at East Patrol,” Caplan said. “This is great news for Scarritt Renaissance.”

Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, indicated that Sutton attempted to insulate himself from liability by showing co-conspirators how to make and present counterfeit identification and checks in exchange for a share of the illegal proceeds. According to Dickinson, Sutton admitted that the “intended loss amount” was $83,981.

Three other defendants also pleaded guilty in the conspiracy: 37-year-old Gary K. Keesler, 28-year-old Chad M. Mills, and 33-year-old Christopher Hite.

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