Carer stole from elderly Sheffield man with Alzheimer’s to pay for Jamaica trip

Jolene Bernard
Jolene Bernard
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A cruel carer stole more than £2,000 from an 89-year-old man with Alzheimer’s disease to pay for flights to Jamaica.

Cheating Jolene Bernard, aged 39, of Norwood Drive, Shirecliffe, Sheffield, was caught after a relative checked the victim’s bank statement.

Bernard – who used the cash to pay for expensive flights for her family – was locked up for a year for ‘a complete breach of trust’.

Rupert Doswell, prosecuting, told Sheffield Crown Court Bernard cared for the victim – who also has Parkinson’s disease.

The elderly victim had ‘always been careful with money’ but due to deteriorating health, his finances were passed on to his brother-in-law in 2011.

The 89-year-old’s health started to deteriorate further and he was taken into hospital on May 16, 2014.

Mr Doswell said: “While the victim was in hospital bank statements were checked and his brother-in-law noticed a peculiar transaction to DialAFlight on November 19, 2013.”

Police were alerted and Bernard was later arrested for theft.

The court heard a transaction was paid for a return flights to Jamaica for her family.

Bernard pleaded guilty on the first day of her trial, admitting to the theft of £2,348.

Mr Doswell said when interviewed by police Bernard ‘shifted blame’ suggesting other employees stole from people they cared for.

Bernard also said that the complainant ‘had paid for her’.

The court heard Bernard had worked at Marigolds Clean and Care Services since 2012.

Francis Edusei, defending, said: “She was in a position of trust and she got to know the victim very well. She introduced him to members of her family.

“She acted in this way very stupidly towards the victim and she regrets her behaviour.”

Judge Jonathan Durham-Hall QC, sentencing Bernard, said: “You used his bank card in a complete breach of trust.

“You used it to pay for expensive flights to Jamaica. You were not struggling to make ends meet.

“You should have been caring for him but instead you took his money.”