REHAB CENTER SOCIAL WORKER CHARGED WITH GRAND LARCENY FOR STEALING NEARLY $150,000 FROM 90-YEAR-OLD PATIENT
Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced today that Olivia Gordon, 28, has been charged with grand larceny, identity theft and other crimes for allegedly stealing nearly $150,000 from an elderly patient at a rehab center where she worked as the Director of Social Services in 2019. The defendant also is accused of setting things in motion to make herself the heir of the victim’s $1 million annuity.
District Attorney Katz said, “Instead of doing her job and looking out for this elderly woman’s best interest, this social worker allegedly let greed guide her actions. Not only is this defendant accused of making huge cash withdrawals from the 90-year-old’s bank account, she also set things in motion to take control of a million dollar annuity. This kind of manipulation and deceit is not only immoral, but criminal and the defendant now faces very serious charges.”
Gordon, of Harold Avenue in Hempstead, Long Island, was arraigned last night before Queens Criminal Court Judge David Kirschner on a complaint charging her with attempted grand larceny in the first degree, grand larceny in the second degree, criminal possession of stolen property in the second degree, identity theft in the first degree and unlawful possession of personal identification information in the third degree. Judge Kirschner set the defendant’s return date for May 4, 2021. Gordon faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.
District Attorney Katz said, between March and July of 2019 Gordon was a social worker at a rehabilitation and health care center in Far Rockaway, Queens. The 90-year-old woman was a patient at that time – she had been transferred there from a hospital following a fall in her Brooklyn home. As part of the defendant’s job duties, she had access to the complainant’s personal information including, bank account statements and an annuity
Shortly after attaining the bank documents, according to the charges, Gordon allegedly began siphoning money from the elderly woman’s bank account. Beginning in May 2019, the defendant allegedly withdrew $12,996 from the patient’s account. Other withdrawals followed for $2,748; $21,171 and the largest one-time withdrawal of $106,148.
The DA said, according to charges, the defendant’s Bank of America account received a credit in the sum of $12,996. Gordon’s Capital One Visa account was credited $2,748 and her Discover card was paid $21,171. An examination of records of the defendant’s Federal student loan revealed a single lump sum payment of $106, 148 which paid off the defendant’s student loan account on or about June 20, 2019.
Continuing, DA Katz said, the company holding an annuity for the elderly woman received a fax on May 7, 2019 of a beneficiary form from Gordon along with a handwritten note. The defendant allegedly told the financial institution that she was the “caretaker/pseudo grandchild” of the 90-year-old and a couple of days later sent a second fax with a note requesting a distribution of cash. The company did not disburse any money because they were unable to communicate directly with the elderly woman to verify the request.
If anyone believes they or someone they know over the age of 60 have been victimized, please call the Elder Fraud Unit at (718) 286-6578.
The investigation was jointly conducted by the Elder Fraud Unit and Detective Kimberly Ortiz of the QDA’s Detective Bureau, under the supervision of Sgt. Patrick Dolan, Sgt. Edwin Driscoll, Lt. John Kenna, Deputy Chief Daniel O’Brien and Chief Edwin Murphy.
Assistant District Attorney Christine Burke, Section Chief of the District Attorney’s Elder Fraud Unit within the Frauds Bureau, is prosecuting the case with the assistance of paralegal Daren Wilkes, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorneys Joseph Conley, Bureau Chief, Herman Wun, Deputy Chief, and under the overall supervision Executive Assistant District Attorney for Investigations Gerard Brave.
**Criminal complaints and indictments are accusations. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.