Tracy Lawrence, the Las Vegas notary who blew the whistle on a massive foreclosure fraud scheme, was found dead in her home on Nov. 28.
The cause of death has not been determined, but the Las Vegas Police Department spokesperson said the case was not being investigated as a homicide.
Lawrence came forward earlier in November and admitted to the Nevada Attorney General’s Office that she notarized 25,000 fraudulent documents for Lender Processing Services, a Florida company used by most major banks to process home repossessions. She also accused two loan officers of allegedly running the massive robo-signing scheme, saying they forged signatures on tens of thousands of default notices.
Nevada now alleges that Gary Trafford and Gerri Sheppard, both of California, directed their employees to forge foreclosure documents, notarize the signatures on the documents they had forged and file the fraudulent paperwork in order to begin foreclosures on homes throughout Clark County, Nev.
Trafford and Sheppard have been indicted on more than 600 counts of offering false instruments for recording, false certification on certain instruments and notarization of the signature of a person not in the presence of a notary.
Lawrence pleaded guilty to one count of notarizing the signature of a person not in her presence, The Associated Press reported. She faced a potential sentence of up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,000.
According to RealtyTrac, Nevada has had the highest foreclosure rate in the nation for 56 straight months.