U.S. Indictment Accuses Incline Woman Of Cutting Tahoe Trees

A federal grand jury has indicted an Incline Village woman for allegedly hiring a crew to cut down three large pine trees up to a century old on U.S. Forest Service land at Lake Tahoe.

58-year-old Patricia Vincent was indicted by the grand jury in Reno last week on two charges, including theft of government property.

If convicted, she faces up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count.

The three ponderosa pine trees from 80 to 100 years old were growing on a national forest lot the Forest Service had designated as environmentally sensitive as part of a plan to help protect the clarity of Lake Tahoe.

The property is across the street from the Incline Village Championship Golf Course designed by Robert Trent Jones Senior.

The indictment accuses Vincent of hiring a commercial tree removal business in April to cut down the trees to enhance her view.

The indictment says the damage exceeded $10,000.

Vincent could not immediately be reached for comment.