Carer caught stealing by spy cam on air freshener

After planting an freshener camera in the bedroom, the family found the carer is stealing hundreds of pounds from the vulnerable disabled pensioner

The video shows Mary Annabell Riordan was taking money from the drawer when the 75-year-old Pauline Guthrie was in the bath.

Riordan has cared the disabled Guthrie in and out bath for six years at her sheltered accommodation.

It’s claimed that Riordan has stolen reach £960 from Ms Guthrie during September and October last year in Lancaster Magistrates Court.

“After noticed plenty of Guthrie’s money was disappearing, the family installed the spy camera ,and find the carer was taking money from the old woman’s drawer.” Peter Bardsley said in the court

The carer has admitted all of it ,and feel sorry for what she have done. Because of the financial crisis and greedy, she took the money from  £14 to £220 one week.

She said she’s already felt disgusted for it ,and hope to pay back the money, so she’s glad to be caught.

Magistrates heard how how Riordan used the money for helping get her pregnant daughter accommodation.

Crown Prosecution Service of Donna Thompson said : “it’s a serious case and an unpleasant one.

It’s refer to numerous personal issues about why Ms Riordan struggled to cope on a financial level and emotional level.

John Halewood-Dodd, defending said: “She is a mother with five children, a 14-year-old son and a daughter with a two year-old .

“She couldn’t find a better way and opportunity to take money from the drawer.

“I am not saying it was a one off, she did feel awful and got on very well with Miss Guthrie.

“She has expressed her remorse, helped police, and has brought the money with her today and has written a letter of an apology. It is a foolish act to get involved with but she is clearly of good character and has shown genuine remorse.”

Speaking after the case the daughter of Pauline Guthrie told the Lancaster Guardian how her mum is still suffering.

Annie Pearson said: “There seems to be a lot of support for her but not for my mum. It is very upsetting, when I first had my suspicions I wasn’t sleeping, it was all I could think about, we couldn’t prove it at first, it was so frustrating.

“Mum doesn’t go out anymore, she is totally devastated, it has ruined her. She was vulnerable and even more so now.

“She has a mental illness, tremors, she can’t walk very far, she needs help getting in and out of the bath, she had Bell’s palsy at the time it happened.

“If Mary was struggling does that make it right to steal money off a vulnerable person?”

Chairman of the bench, Mrs Appleton, said: “This has been a very difficult case for us to come to a conclusion. We all agree it was a despicable act to a very vulnerable disabled old lady who clearly trusted you.”

Riordan received 26 weeks prison suspended for two years and a 12 month community order with rehabilitation, and ordered to pay £80 costs and £740 compensation.

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