The home-squatting frauds of a hypnotic con artist

Jessica Carde

She's a wealthy hypnotherapist, counselor, life coach, fortune-teller, trainer, consultant, mediator, international motivational speaker, health educator, and neurobiofeedback technician / brain wave specialist.

So she has said.

She's filed for bankruptcy seven times, been married five times, and has been a defendant in 27 civil cases.

Her name is Jessica Hartman, Juanita Hofseth-Lammer, Juanita Frye or Jessica Carde.

She squats in expensive homes and doesn't pay the rent, and if you try to make her pay, she'll accuse you of a crime.

She's 58 years old, and she's one hell of a con-woman.

From an article in Seattle Weekly:
According to her alleged victims, Lammer—now going by the name Jessica Carde—has left a wake of destruction in both Snohomish and King County. Years after a 14-month, cross-country fugitive flight from justice first brought her to Washington, victims say that they fell prey to an incredibly charming woman willing to say or do whatever it takes to get what she wants, and to intimidate and threaten anyone who stands in her way. Carde's purported modus operandi, according to her alleged victims, is to present herself as a buyer of their million-dollar homes, sign a lease even though she can't come up with the money to close, and then squat without paying rent for months—sometimes more than a year. Six homeowners over four years claim to have come under her spell. Court documents and interviews paint a picture of a manipulator who with the help of a background in hypnotherapy, some victims say, literally hypnotized them. Irate home-owners, one of whom is accused of threatening to kill Carde, claim she's cost them (and one elderly stroke survivor) hundreds of thousands of dollars, their homes and businesses, and in one case their will to live.

"I have a lot of mental issues because of this woman, and attempted to take my life," says Kevin Roberts, a builder in Snohomish County for 35 years who claims he filed for bankruptcy and lost five homes to foreclosure because of his failed business relationship with Carde. "You gotta trust me, man—she destroyed me."

Carde insists it's all one big misunderstanding. In fact, she claims she's the victim. Yet an extensive search into her past shows that there's hardly ever been a time in her life when the truth wasn't up for debate.
As of March 2013, she faces 12 felony charges.

She's still at large.

The short story: Charges: Posing as fat cat, woman squatted in mini-mansions, Seattle PI>>

The longer story: Homewrecker. The unbelievable past of the area's most feared tenant. Seattle Weekly>>

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