Washington Post

Yale Scammer Must Repay Scholarship

The Associated Press
Friday, April 7, 2000; 4:11 p.m. EDT

NEW HAVEN, Conn. –– A woman who got into Yale University by forging transcripts and letters of recommendation was put on three years' probation Friday and ordered to repay $16,000 in scholarships.

Tonica Jenkins, 24, of East Cleveland, Ohio, was also ordered to undergo psychological treatment.

Jenkins got into a graduate program in neurobiology by creating transcripts with good grades and glowing letters of recommendation from Cuyahoga Community College and Central State University, both in Ohio.

She had attended the community college but did not earn a bachelor's degree. She never attended the other school.

Her forgeries earned her a full scholarship and living expenses.

The forgeries were discovered in 1997 after Jenkins failed to take exams for her courses, claiming illness. Yale began looking into her academic history to see whether she had a pattern of missing exams.

She pleaded guilty to larceny and forgery, as well as biting prison guards who tried to fingerprint her.

She missed a court appearance in 1998, claiming that she had been abducted, raped and stuffed in the trunk of her car. A judge didn't believe her and sent her to prison.

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