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Former nursing home employee convicted of theft

September 3, 2015
by Nicole Stempak, Associate Editor
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A former nursing home employee has been convicted for the theft of more than $4,000 in patient trust fund money, Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange announced Monday.

"This defendant was entrusted with the financial care of vulnerable nursing home residents and instead preyed upon them,'' Strange said in a press release. "I hope her conviction will serve as a deterrent to others."

Gwendolyn Michelle Lacy, 38, was arrested in July following a four-count indictment issued in March 2015. Lacy pleaded guilty to first-degree theft of property and criminal computer tampering.

Lacy was the former business office manager at East Glen Nursing Home in Birmingham, Ala. She admitted to manipulating three resident accounts to hide the theft. Lacy updated their profiles to include her associates, who were not affiliated with the nursing home, as family members. The associates then cashed the checks for Lacy.

The nursing home discovered thefts, totaling $4,068, during a routine audit.

Lacy received a 16-month suspended sentenced. She was ordered to serve one year probation and pay full restitution. She has been barred from working at any facility that receives Medicaid or other federal healthcare funding.

Co-defendant Clarence Dates has also pleaded guilty. Strange said charges are pending against three others who have not yet been named.

Read more about how to responsibly manage patient funds.