Caregiver accused of ripping off elderly victim for $190,000
SEDONA — A caregiver has been arrested and charged with stealing $190,000 from an 89-year-old blind woman, according to Yavapai County Sheriff’s spokesman Dwight D’Evelyn.
Christina Rodriguez, 42, of the Village of Oak Creek, “used several of the victim’s credit cards for personal gain,” D’Evelyn said.
Because the victim is blind, she needed the caregiver to pay bills for her, and, D’Evelyn said, detectives examining bank records
and receipts learned that Rodriguez made many unauthorized charges to the victim’s credit card accounts between January 2014 and December 2016.
The purchases were not for the victim, but for Rodriguez herself, D’Evelyn said.
She bought $35,000 worth of electronics, cameras, quadcopters, and similar products from an online source, spent $20,000 locally, paid off $38,000 of her own debt, and also wrote checks payable to cash, giving herself thousands of dollars, D’Evelyn said.
When Rodriguez was confronted by family she resigned.
In an interview with detectives, she said the victim told her to
spend the money or suggested it was payment for extra hours worked.
On Feb. 16, detectives served a search warrant on Rodriguez’s home and recovered thousands of dollars in property; they also searched storage units and found even more.
Rodriguez was arrested and booked into the Camp Verde jail on charges of theft, fraudulent schemes, credit card fraud, unlawful use of power of attorney, and identity theft.
She’s been released on $20,000 bond.