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Hanging scale

A Marion Center area woman last week admitted in Indiana County Court that she stole about $100,000 from an elderly man in her care in 2018.

Cyndi K-P Patz, 50, of Skyline Drive, pleaded guilty April 26 to a single felony count of theft by deception at a hearing before Judge Michael Clark.

Under terms of a plea bargain, the district attorney’s office agreed to hold back on three other felony counts of theft, access device fraud and receiving stolen property.

Through an investigation by Detective Bradley Shields of the D.A.’s office, Patz was accused of pilfering funds from Raymond Spencer soon after being hired as a caretaker for him and Betty Boarts in 2018.

Shields reported in court papers that Spencer’s children asked for an investigation after the Internal Revenue Service went after Spencer for unpaid taxes on funds that Patz had withdrawn from his accounts using his debit card at an automated teller machine.

Spencer’s nephew Christopher Stewart and Boarts’ daughter, Karen Gromley, told Shields that Patz had been tasked with taking Boarts and Stewart to stores, hairdressers and on other errands.

Patz traded in Spencer’s 2001 Chevy Tracker and bought a 2007 Buick LaCrosse with his money so she would have a better vehicle for running their errands. Stewart and Gromley studied their elders’ bank records and found hundreds of transactions that Spencer and Boarts didn’t make, and they fired Patz from the caretaker duties before contacting the district attorney’s office, court records showed.

Shields reported in a criminal complaint that Patz took $105,580 from Spencer’s accounts between June 2018 and September 2019.

Online court records show Patz was allowed to remain free on $10,000 bond to await sentencing.

A date has not been set.