Bonnybridge mum-of-six stole £1500 in fees intended for care home from mother-in-law
A Bonnybridge mum-of-six stole £1500 from her ill mother-in-law’s bank account when the pensioner was admitted to a care home.
Kirsty Gorman, 39, of 21 Wheatlands Avenue, Bonnybridge, took the sum of cash from 83-year-old Theresa Gorman between August 15, 2018 and March 25, 2019.
Gorman, who appeared in person at Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday, admitted taking and keeping for herself weekly cash instalments from the pensioner’s account after she was admitted to Bankview Care Home – when she should have used the money to pay for the care facility’s fees.
Procurator fiscal depute India MacLean told the court the matter first came to light in April 2019 when the management of the OAP’s guardianship was allocated to a community care worker employed by Falkirk Council.
The fiscal depute said: “A mental health officer also visited the accused and she was made aware the care home fees hadn’t been paid and that she was in arrears.
“In light of this non-payment, an application was made to see the accused’s bank statements and it was confirmed withdrawals had been made despite a lack of contribution to the care home fees.
“Bankview Nursing Home contacted her and confirmed no payments had been made to the account for care home fees. At the time the accused attended at Falkirk Police Station voluntarily.”
Defence solicitor Martin Morrow said his client had no previous convictions and had repaid the sum “in full”.
The court was told Gorman receives annual state handouts of £30,000 for herself, children and husband, who she cares for.
Gorman’s husband is paid £220 per month from the government in Personal Independent Payments.
Her solicitor continued: “She ended up trying to deal with matters because she’s the principal carer for her husband and has six children.
“By October 9, 2018, she had a meeting social workers at Bankview, saying, ‘I can’t make this work’ and signed a guardianship order in October 2018.”
Sheriff Derek Hamilton questioned why she kept on taking the money.
Her solicitor said Gorman had difficulties in transferring the cash to the care home from her mother-in-law’s account.
The solicitor added: “What she ought to have done in August 2018 was say, ‘I’m not up to this’.
“She had quite a lot on her plate. She had a very stressful time of it and made a point of making sure that’s been paid.
“She’s assessed as unlikely to re-offend. She understands she was in the wrong and has tried to put things right.”
The court heard Gorman and the care home have been given hearing times for a separate civil matter.
The solicitor added: “The figure they want is significantly more. I will try to find out about the other matter.
“Something is happening offstage. There’s a significant financial requirement she has to meet.”
Fining Gorman, Sheriff Hamilton said: “You’ll pay £1200 at £140 per month.”
The fine was imposed as an alternative to custody.
Addressing her lawyer, the Sheriff said: “If she doesn’t pay the instalments, she’ll go into custody.”