A carer who stole cash from a 91-year-old man as he recovered in hospital has been given a 22-month prison sentence suspended for two years.
Sharon Tolley, 44, was employed to care for the elderly Rotherham man by CRG Home Care, but stole his bank cards and pin number to withdraw over £8,000 between July and September last year.
At Sheffield Crown Court yesterday Tolley received a suspended sentence and was also ordered to complete 240 hours unpaid work and pay £500 compensation to the victim.
The theft began when the elderly man suffered a fall at his home address last July. Tolley, of Hounsfield Crescent, Rotherham, had access to his home and began withdrawing money from his account while he was recovering in hospital.
Tolley told officers she spent some of the cash paying off debts but also blew some of it on clothes, furniture, a new iPad tablet, a pressure washer, and a holiday to Skegness. She told those close to her that she’d won the Irish lottery to account for the extra money.
By September that year, Tolley had withdrawn £8,160 – leaving just £2 in the pensioner’s bank account.
When the loss of money became clear, an investigation was launched and with CRG Home Care’s full co-operation, Tolley was identified as the offender arrested and charged with burglary and theft. Throughout the investigation, Tolley showed no remorse for her actions.
Tolley’s partner, Darren Boden, 42, who maintained he knew nothing about the theft, was charged with possession of criminal property. He was given a five-month community order, five-month electronic curfew and ordered to pay the victim £2000 compensation.
Both Tolley and Boden pleaded guilty to the charges against them and were sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court today.
PC Lynn Robins, a South Yorkshire Police Vulnerable Persons Officer, led the inquiry. She said: “Sharon Tolley was employed to care for and look after the victim, but she abused her position of trust in the worst possible way.
“She took a substantial sum of money while the elderly man who had trusted her was in hospital. She knew he was vulnerable and in fact thought he had died. She callously stole from him simply to make herself more comfortable, going on spending sprees and funding a family holiday.
“This has been a complex and lengthy investigation, and I am pleased that Tolley has been held to account for her cruel actions - financial abuse in South Yorkshire will not be tolerated.”