DENVER - An Aurora woman who failed to pay for a child care center she purchased in 2010, and who is accused of failing to make payments on properties she leased for two other businesses, has pleaded guilty to one count of defrauding a secured creditor.
Yasmeen Watson, 31, was given a 3-year deferred sentence and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $58,000.
Watson purchased the Kids Town Drop-In Child Care Center at 13th and Krameria from Amy Feldman for $60,000 in March 2010. She put $5,000 down and signed a $55,000 promissory note which included an escalation clause stating that upon the sale of the business, monies owed became due and payable.
She made payments totaling $4,672.
Watson then sold the business to Shannon Perret in March of 2012 for $52,000.
Perret told 7NEWS that when she purchased the property, she asked Watson if there were any liens or unpaid bills. She said Watson replied via email, "No, there are no liens, judgments or lawsuits."
But there were.
Investigators say Watson told them she intended to pay Feldman, but had fallen into a depression when her grandmother passed away.
Court documents state that instead of using the money she received from Perret to pay Feldman, Watson spent most of it on personal expenses like restaurants, Blockbuster videos and online purchases.
Perret was left holding the bag because of the lien and Watson's misdeeds.
Perret, who was in court when Watson pleaded guilty, told 7NEWS that Watson did not want to grant prosecutors access to her bank records.
When the judge ruled against Watson, she then pleaded guilty, according to Perret.
"It's just a shame that someone who is so cunning and capable would not put those skills to a more positive use," Perret had earlier told 7NEWS.
After Watson sold the child care center, she purchased a holistic health care business in Boulder.
The property owner told 7NEWS that he spent $20,000 remodeling the office space for that business and that Watson failed to pay the lease.
She then moved the business to Denver to office space she had leased at 16th and Market Streets.
A source there said Watson sublet the property and collected rent but didn't pay the lease there either.
"She should have been put behind bars," Perret said, "but I am glad she's being held accountable."