48° F
Light Rain
Light Rain

Charges dropped against couple in school residency case

Published On: Jan 28 2014 10:56:21 PM EST   Updated On: Jan 29 2014 08:09:17 AM EST

School district residency case

A Philadelphia couple who allegedly lied about where they lived in order to send their daughter to a better school in Montgomery County had their day in court.

The trial was supposed to last several days but the judge hearing the case has decided to settle it once and for all.

In 2012, Hamlet Garcia and his wife Olesia, sent their daughter Fiorella, then five years old, to a school in Lower Moreland Township, Montgomery County.


However, according to the Lower Moreland School District, the family didn't live in the district and it accused the couple of lying about their address so they could send their daughter to a nicer school without paying the property taxes-- a cost of close to $11,000.

“It's been a difficult time for me and my family but I have a lot of trust in my attorneys and I have a lot of trust in the justice system,” said Hamlet Garcia.

Garcia says that during the time in question, he and his wife weren't living together but that his wife was indeed living in Lower Moreland.

In court, prosecutors claim they gave the Garcias several options to remedy the situation including paying for the tuition of the school.

However Mr. Garcia says the district never gave them such opportunities and even refused to accept the tuition the Garcias allegedly owed.

The couple faced felony charges of theft of services and could face up to seven years in prison.

However, after hearing both sides the judge decided to settle the case the same day and in exchange for a guilty plea along with a payment of $10,752.81 for tuition, the felony charges were dropped.