Laurie McGuire

Laurie McGuire

A Limestone County woman accused in 2017 of selling a house she did not yet own has been returned to jail for violating the terms of her release on bond.

Laurie Jones McGuire, 44, of 21075 Broadwater Private Drive, Athens, was arrested Wednesday on a warrant revoking her bond on a previous charge of first-degree theft by deception.

The state, represented by the Limestone County District Attorney's Office, asked the court to revoke her bond after she failed to attend required monitoring sessions, tested positive for illegal drug use, failed to complete treatment and failed to report for a drug screen, court records show.

On Dec. 14, 2018, McGuire was ordered to report to the court referral officer at Limestone Community Corrections Department to submit to a drug test and to follow all recommendations of the CRO. In June, Assistant District Attorney R. Gray West asked Limestone Circuit Judge Robert Baker to consider revoking McGuire's bond because she failed to comply. Baker agreed and a warrant was issued for McGuire's arrest. She will remain jailed until a court hearing to determine if bond can be set.

The case

McGuire is accused of selling a home at 433 Rogers St., near Athens State University, which she did not yet own, to Tommy McLemore and his daughter, Marla McLemore.

The McLemores had agreed on a price of $31,000. He applied for a bank loan to pay for it, but the process was taking a while. McGuire said she needed to close the house as soon as possible, so she offered to sell and finance the purchase. The McLemores paid McGuire $10,000 down in cash to lock in a 4% interest rate on the mortgage. Tommy McLemore also made $2,600 in other payments.

Later, the McLemores earned the home belonged to Ted Barnett of Barnett Real Estate in Ardmore. He said he was selling it to McGuire, but he still held the deed and she had never paid him. In addition, her contract for the home did not allow her to sell it. By then, the McLemores had gutted the home, renovated it, landscaped the yard and installed a driveway.

Athens Police Investigator Kelly Fussell looked into the matter and sent his findings to the Limestone County District Attorney's Office so they could present it to the grand jury. Jurors indicted her on the theft by deception charge. According to the first count of the indictment, McGuire knowingly obtained, or exerted by deception, unauthorized control over more than $2,500 belonging to the McLemores, with intent to deprive them of the money. McGuire later purchased the home from Barnett for $26,000 cash.

Following her indictment, she was released from the Limestone County Jail on a $5,000 bond.

A trial date was set for Feb. 4, but court records do not show a trial outcome or if the trial was postponed. A new trial date has not been set.

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