Nursing home bookkeeper convicted of stealing $4,000 from resident accounts

The former bookkeeper at an Alabama nursing home has been convicted of stealing more than $4,000 from patient trust fund accounts, the state's attorney general announced Tuesday.

Gwendolyn Michelle Lacy was arrested in July on one count of first degree theft and three counts of computer tampering, after officials said she used her position as bookkeeper at East Glen Nursing Home in Birmingham to steal from residents and tamper with records to hide the theft.

Lacy allegedly modified residents' electronic profiles to list the names of people in on the scheme as family members of the residents. She then allegedly wrote checks to those individuals from the facility's resident trust accounts. In total, Lacy wrote and cashed nine checks for a total of $4,068.

"Nothing is more important to East Glen than the trust its residents and their families have placed in us to provide for their safety and well-being," wrote Adam Alvis, executive director at East Glen, in a statement. "Immediately upon learning of this individual's actions, East Glen contacted law enforcement.  East Glen cooperated with the legal and regulatory authorities to ensure that this matter was investigated and the individuals responsible were prosecuted to the fullest extent allowable under the law."

Lacy received a 16-month suspended sentence and one year on probation. She also must pay full restitution, and is banned from ever again working anywhere that receives federal healthcare funding.

One other co-defendant in the scheme has pleaded guilty, Attorney General Luther Strange announced. Charges are pending against three other individuals.