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July 11, 2019

Local inmate dies while suing state women’s prison

Margie Susan Ryder embezzled $79,000 from Warrenton Heating & Air Conditioning and cost the business three times that amount because of failure to make tax and Social Security payments, resulting in huge fines.
Convicted of embezzlement in Fauquier, an inmate has died while suing her state prison for alleged poor medical treatment.

Margie Susan Ryder, 39, of Linden, died Monday in a Richmond hospital, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Ms. Ryder had terminal pulmonary arterial hypertension, causing high blood pressure in her lungs. A pump delivered Remodulin, a powerful heart medication that kept her alive.

Earlier this year, her lawyers alleged that the Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women failed to properly manage her treatment.

Legal Aid Justice Center attorneys April 30 filed a motion asking a federal judge to order the prison to provide a plan that would safely administer Ms. Ryder’s medication. The case remained unresolved when she died.

Ms. Ryder in February 2018 received a two-year prison sentence for embezzling $79,300 from Warrenton Heating & Air Conditioning. Her thefts took place during a 22-month period, beginning in April 2015.

She pleaded guilty in December 2017 in Fauquier County Circuit Court.

Ms. Ryder went to work part-time for the local business in 2009, helping owner Philip Rutter’s mother with bookkeeping. After the death of his mother in 2011, Ms. Ryder took over the company finances, Mr. Rutter said. “That’s when the trouble started.”

Ms. Ryder, who worked full-time as a federal government employee making $74,000 a year, not only stole from Mr. Rutter. She failed to make tax and Social Security payments, resulting in huge penalties, Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Jamey E. Cook said at the sentencing hearing last year.

Ms. Ryder’s crimes cost the business $240,000, according to Mr. Rutter.
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