Nurse caught stealing cash on hidden camera
AN AGED care nurse has been busted stealing an elderly woman's cash after the patient's relatives installed a secret surveillance camera in the wardrobe.
Debbie Ann Brown, 56, stole the $700 which was meant as Christmas presents for her patient's children, Tweed Heads Local Court heard today.
Brown pleaded guilty to larceny.
The court was told the victim had onset Alzheimer's disease and dementia and was being cared for twice a day in her home by the RSL Life Care at Home service.
On December 7 last year, Brown took the victim to a Tweed Heads shopping centre to cash a $700 cheque.
Four days later, the woman opened her wallet to find the money - which she planned to put in her grand children's Christmas cards - missing.
The court was told the woman's relatives were concerned for her safety and had installed a surveillance camera in her walk-in wardrobe.
They viewed the footage on December 22 and it showed Brown looking through the woman's handbag in the wardrobe.
She left the bedroom before returning a short time later with the wallet.
Brown's lawyer Dan Rawlings told the court his client was suffering from mental illness and was extremely embarrassed and remorseful.
Mr Rawlings said Brown had been sacked from her job.
Magistrate Geoff Dunlevy placed Brown on an 18-month community correction order and ordered her to repay the $700.