FREEHOLD, NJA Belmar resident has been charged with making nearly $12,000 in purchases on credit cards she allegedly stole from 90-year-old Spring Lake woman under her care.

Former home health aide Kathleen G. Campion, 50, was arrested on March 2 on charges of third-degree theft by unlawful taking and fraudulent use of a credit card, and fourth-degree theft of a credit card, according to the Monmouth County’s Prosecutor’s Office.

She faces up to five years in state prison on each of the third-degree charges and up to $15,000 in fines, according to authorities.

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An investigation began in May of 2018 after the Spring Lake Police Department received a call alerting them that there were unauthorized charges on various credit cards belonging to the victim, the prosecutor’s office said in a release.

The probe determined that Campion was misappropriating the funds while taking care of the victim, whom she had cared for since 2013. The $11,877.53 in unauthorized charges included payment of the defendant’s utility bill, cell phone bill, health insurance and rent, it added.

“It is incumbent on everyone, particularly those of us in law enforcement, to protect the elderly from harm and fraudulent activity. To that end, the Spring Lake Police Department caught an individual who was entrusted with ensuring the health and well-being of an elderly patient and shamelessly exploited that relationship for her own personal gain,” said Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni said.

“This arrest demonstrates the value of our partnerships with the local law enforcement agencies that help us remain vigilant and keep an ever-watchful eye over those that are most vulnerable to this type of fraudulent criminal activity,” Gramiccioni said.

The arrest was made by the Spring Lake Police Department. The case has been assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Diane Aifer.

Despite these charges, every defendant is presumed innocent, unless and until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, following a trial at which the defendant has all of the rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and state law.

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