The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

State and Nation

July 1, 2014

Ex-nursing home bookkeeper convicted of stealing residents' money

A former Conecuh County nursing home bookkeeper has been sentenced to 14 months on probation and ordered to repay more than $4,000 after being convicted of stealing money from residents.

Mary K. Nowell embezzled more than $4,000 from residents at Evergreen Nursing Home and Rehabilitation, Attorney General Luther Strange reported today.

Nowell, 49, and currently a resident of Bon Secour, had been employed as a bookkeeper at the facility from November 2008 until February 2013. Crowne Management, the owner of the facility, conducted an internal audit of the facility’s patient trust fund after discrepancies were noted in the residents’ accounts, Strange said.

Nowell stole the money by manipulating the computer-based accounting records, the attorney general said. She pleaded guilty to first-degree theft of property, a Class B felony, after having been indicted on the charge by the March 2014 term of the Conecuh County grand jury, he said.

Sentence

Conecuh District Judge Jeffrey Brock accepted the plea and sentenced Nowell to 14 months imprisonment, but he suspended the jail time and placed her on supervised probation for 14 months and ordered her to pay $4,280 in restitution to Crowne management and a $500 fine, Strange said.

The case was investigated by the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and was prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Jon Moody.

“We are grateful for the diligence of the facility’s management in discovering this theft and taking prompt action to bring the defendant to justice,” Strange said. “Today’s conviction should serve as a message that preying upon vulnerable nursing home residents will not be tolerated.”

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