GOSHEN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – She wore white on her wedding day, only to end up in an orange jump suit, charged with fraud.
But on Wednesday the bride who lied about having terminal cancer was released from jail and hoping to start her life over, CBS 2’s Tony Aiello reported.
Leaving the Orange County Jail that had been her home for seven weeks, Jessica Vega seemed eager to put this self-inflicted ordeal behind her.
The 25-year-old apologized for telling a big twisted lie two years ago, claiming to have terminal cancer to convince sympathetic folks to help pay for her dream wedding and Caribbean honeymoon.
Vega, who is from Virginia, but lived in Montgomery, N.Y., accepted cash, a free gown and free flowers, all totaling $13,000.
“She feels bad about that. This thing got out of control. This was not a preplanned thing; this was like a snowball going downhill,” attorney Jeremiah Flaherty said.
After the wedding, Vega’s husband grew suspicious. They separated and he turned her in. They’ve since reconciled, but is their marriage healed?
“In due time, in due time, if she keeps it together, yeah, if not … definitely anxious. All’s well that ends well you know?” husband Michael O’Connell said.
On Wednesday, Judge Robert Freehill sentenced Vega to time served, noting she has made full restitution to all the defrauded donors.
She’ll live with her husband and their kids at her in-law’s house.
“We lost money, too. We lost our minds. I feel bad for everybody that lost on that,” father-in-law Chris O’Connell said.
Rain may or may not be good luck on a wedding day but it’s what greeted Vega as she left the jail. Two years after the ceremony, she got a final gift from the judge — a second chance.
The judge said he can’t believe Vega pulled off the cancer fraud by herself. Vega’s husband flatly denies any knowledge of her wrongdoing.
Do you think Vega should get prison? Let us know…