A family in North Texas employed a caregiver to assist with household tasks. They now allege that this choice resulted in almost a year of theft, harassment and intimidation.
According to CBS, Carrollton resident Sally Wilkerson required assistance at home due to her mobility challenges and her husband's dementia. To provide in-home care, she hired a company named ComforCare, which supplied aides. In May of last year, she was introduced to her caregiver. Wilkerson recalls that the caregiver appeared friendly and took her to places like the grocery store and the beauty salon.
Two weeks after the woman started, Wilkerson saw a charge for $6,000 at Neiman Marcus. Wilkerson claims the caregiver stole financial records, social security cards and blank checks while she was supposed to be caring for Wilkerson's husband. Wilkerson called the bank, but it was too late.
"I couldn't believe it! They had taken around $50,000," Wilkerson said.
After the family reported the theft and abuse, they informed the police and also contacted ComforCare. The company provided a statement to CBS News Texas I-Team, stating that it mandates all its employees to undergo background checks through government reporting agencies. The company also said they promptly terminated the caregiver's employment. Local Profile attempted to contact ComforCare but did not receive a response.
Even though the caregiver was no longer present, the family's problems persisted. According to them, the woman and her boyfriend repeatedly submitted credit card and loan applications using the Wilkersons' personal information. Then, they say, the threats began.
The caregiver allegedly texted Wilkerson her social security number, along with a message demanding $10,000 cash and threatening to kidnap her daughter.
“We got your whole life in our hand you got until midnight tomorrow to have 10,000 in cash or I’m going to destroy your life,” the text read.
In another text, the person claimed to be outside Wilkerson’s home. The homeowners also received phone calls. "They were going to blow our house up, they were going to kidnap her from work and kill her," said Wilkerson. "I mean, we didn't know what to think."
The Carrollton Police Department told CBS detectives are filing a case with the Denton County District Attorney's Office this week. After months of investigating, detectives realized the caregiver used a stolen identity to get the caregiver job and named Brittany McDowell as the true suspect in the case.
McDowell is being accused of forgery against an elderly person, fraudulent use-possession of identity information of an elderly person and fraudulent use of identifying information. Another individual, Kiissac Woods, was also been charged with forgery as part of the ongoing investigation.