A care worker from Neston stole £1,000 from a vulnerable wheelchair-bound pensioner - just days before going on an “exotic” African holiday, a court has heard.
The mum-of-seven, Debra Morris, who was the 87-year-old victim’s favourite carer, was put behind bars for 12 months.
A judge told Morris, a grandmother-of-ten, whose two previous convictions include benefit fraud: “Stealing from the old and infirm is despicable and quite richly deserves punishment.
“The message must go out in no uncertain terms that an immediate custodial sentence will be the consequence when a carer steals,” said Recorder Andrew Long.
“It is no coincidence whatsoever you stole this shortly before embarking on an exotic foreign holiday.”
Liverpool Crown Court heard that Morris, 54, was one of the carers who looked after the victim at her Bromborough home.
As a stranger had once tricked his way into her home, CCTV cameras had consequently been installed in the house including in her bedroom.
Her niece helped her deal with her finances but the pensioner did not like banks and kept cash under her bed. On November 12 last year she had at least £1,000 in her handbag under her bed, said Simon Leong, prosecuting.
She realised the cash was missing and when her niece checked the CCTV footage the only person who had been near the bag was Morris.
Morris, of Ringway, Neston, was arrested and denied being responsible but after a trial a jury found her guilty of theft.
Recorder Long told her: “You did this offence brazenly knowing perfectly well that CCTV cameras were in place as the result of a previous theft sustained. When she learnt what had happened she was distraught and her family never told her who had stolen the money as she was very fond of you.
“Unfortunately now she is very worried about everyone who comes to her home fearing they might steal from her.
“You have shown no remorse, indeed you continue to deny the offence despite the overwhelming evidence,” he added.
Brian Treadwell, defending, said she had been with her partner for 34 years and they both have health issues as she suffers from depression and anxiety. She is still working for a care home company where she is highly regarded.