BRPD: Caretaker apologized for $40K stolen in debit from elderly client
BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A Baton Rouge woman told authorities that she felt bad for taking advantage of an 84-year-old woman she was care-taking last year. She allegedly stole just under $40,000 in debit purchases using the elderly victim's debit cards.
Barbara Smith, 48, is accused of allegedly visiting various businesses multiple times and making excessive transactions without permission. The total amounts spent at several individual retailers range up to the thousands. The grand sum of all the unauthorized purchases came to $38,100.32
According to Capt. Darryl Rainwater of the BRPD, the victim's son contacted officials, saying that he recently noticed large amounts of charges placed on his mother's account which he felt were not made by her. The Baton Rouge Police Department decided to investigate.
Rainwater reported that after pulling various surveillance videos and speaking with several employees from businesses where the excessive purchases were made, authorities were able to identify Smith as the purchaser.
Officials say Smith later admitted to making unauthorized charges to the victim's debit card, and said that the victim is 'a good lady and she felt bad for taking advantage of her'. Smith also reportedly told officials that the purchases made were for herself and her son; no purchases were made on the victim's behalf.
Authorities say Smith told them that she had every intention of paying the victim back, but the complaint was made 'before she could get everything straight'.
Smith was booked into the EBR Parish Prison on 24 counts of the theft of assets of an aged or disabled person.
The totals of the 2013 business transactions allegedly made by Smith are as follows:
Time Zone on Jan. 20 for $10.90
Kay's Jewelers from Jan. 20 to Dec. 8 for $9,078.32
Trung Luong Nails on Jan. 21 for $25.00
Hip Hop Fashions on Jan. 22 for $43.60
Studio 964 Salon on April 4 for $90.00
Tim's Formal Wear on April 11 for $51.80
Magnolia Furniture Zachary from April 13 and Sept. 21 for $308.30
The Cleaning Station Zachary from April 15 to Aug. 3 (3 times) $119.11
Joe Brown Auto King Zachary on May 16 for $436.00
Ashley Furniture in Baker from May 20 to Aug. 31 (6 times) for a total of $1,138.62
Affordable Home Furniture in Baker from May 23 to Dec 13 (16 times) for a total of $3,119.21
Royal Furniture from May 27 till Dec. 13 (14times) for $2,815.49
Olindes Hardware and Supply from May 30 till Aug. 5 (3 times) for $1,082.60
Cox Communications BR from May 24 to Dec. 4 (8 times) for $1,567.02
AT&T payment from June 2 to Dec. 20 (15 times) for $3,590.79
AT&T Store in Zachary from June 7 to Dec. 14 (9 times) for $2,077.72
Mercedes Benz BR from Aug. 16 till Oct. 10 for $2,712.31
Pier One Imports on Aug. 22 for $288.85
Upholstery Unlimited from Sept. 25 to Dec 3 for $ 4,199.22
Superior Tech on Sept 29 for $399.95
Academy Sports from Oct. 12 to Dec. 21 ( 8 times) for a total of $1,179.11
Centurion Car Care on Oct. 16 and Oct. 22 (2 times) for $1,311.32
State Farm Insurance on Oct 22 and Nov. 11 for $1,138.44
Cato Plus in Zachary on Nov. 30 for $123.03
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