by Bobby Kerlik - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 31, 2008 - page 4
A former John McCain campaign volunteer will undergo counseling and enter a diversion program for first-time offenders for fabricating a story that an armed Barack Obama supporter robbed her and scratched a backward "B" onto her cheek.
Ashley Todd, 20, of College Station, TX, who confessed to police that she marred her own face, was released from jail last night after waiving her right to a preliminary hearing in Pittsburgh Municipal Court.
As a condition of her release, she must undergo counseling and is expected to enter the first-time offenders program that could leave her with a clean record if she successfully completes it.
"When we were putting this together, our primary concern was that she not be a threat to herself or anyone else", Deputy District Attorney Chris Avetta said about the agreement. "She does not have any prior criminal convictions."
Todd is charged with filing a false police report, which carries a maximum 2-year jail sentence and $5,000 fine. She appeared in court wearing a red Allegheny County Jail jumpsuit. The "B" on her right cheek has faded to a light red scratch.
A psychiatrist with the county's behavioral clinic examined Todd while she was jailed and concluded she was competent to stand trial, but needed counseling. Todd must provide the court with paperwork every 2 weeks documenting that she is receiving psychiatric treatment.