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District Attorney - Press Releases

Posted on: August 29, 2019

08/29/2019 Former BIRD bakery manager sentenced

A former manager of BIRD bakery was sentenced yesterday to four years in prison for stealing thousands of dollars from the business.  She was also ordered to pay $124,000 in restitution.


Jessica Martinez, 24, pled no contest to Misapplication of Fiduciary Property ($30,000 to $150,000) and Theft ($30,000 to $150,000) on July 9, 2019.  Both of these charges are third degree felonies. The sentencing hearing was held yesterday, August 28, 2019.  


Martinez was hired to work at BIRD bakery in Alamo Heights at the age of 19. She was eventually promoted to manager, which gave her greater ability to override BIRD bakery’s controls. Records show that Martinez then conducted 464 fraudulent transactions for various amounts during the period beginning December 12, 2016, and extending through May 1, 2018.  The amount of money involved in the fraudulent transactions totaled $124,521.88.


Records and testimony revealed Martinez used the stolen money to buy designer goods for herself and gifts for others – including coworkers.


While BIRD bakery reviewed records to determine the source of its losses, the company was forced to scrap plans for a new Denver location and to shift funds from its Dallas location to supplement the employee payroll in Alamo Heights. The company was also unable to give raises or bonuses to employees, including Martinez's coworkers, due to the missing money. 


Martinez was taken into custody immediately after sentencing in the 187th District Court. 


The case was investigated by the Texas Rangers and the Alamo Heights Police Department.  Prosecutors were Assistant District Attorneys Dawn McCraw and Justin Fischer.


In a statement, BIRD owner, Elizabeth Chambers Hammer, said:


“From the day we opened our doors at BIRD, it has been our goal to approach and operate our company as a small business – no matter how large the company becomes. From day one, we have treated our employees (and guests) like family and have put significant trust in our staff, particularly senior management.


Unfortunately, one of our trusted managers chose to commit an egregious crime over the course of many, many months and today, thanks to Dawn McCraw and Judge Stephanie Boyd, justice was served.


In the words of ADA McCraw, ‘Crimes are not committed in a vacuum.’ There are far-reaching effects as a result of the defendant’s actions. Not only did our business suffer, our other staff members did as well, both emotionally and financially.


My team and I could not be more grateful for the diligent pursuit of justice by Dawn McCraw, Justin Fischer and Texas Ranger Keith Pauska during this process. We feel very confident that Judge Boyd made the best decision and we are grateful for the precedent and example that she has set for our company.”


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