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Sunday, 31 August 2014

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Carer stole from Carlisle pensioner to pay for wedding

A woman abused the trust put in her by a vulnerable pensioner and stole nearly £3,000 from her – using some of the cash to fund a family wedding.

A judge at Carlisle Crown Court warned 52-year-old Alison Armstrong she was likely to be jailed for her crimes.

Earlier, Armstrong, of Merith Avenue, Botcherby, Carlisle, admitted fraud by dishonestly using her 82-year-old victim’s debit card to buy clothing and a charge of theft, stealing £2,714 from the woman.

She targeted pensioner Theresa Osborne early last year.

Armstrong’s barrister Laura Nash suggested the court would need background reports before passing sentence.

Judge Paul Batty QC told Armstrong: “You have admitted offences of dishonesty which represent a gross breach of trust because you were a carer for this lady, who was partially sighted and deaf.

“You abused that trust in the grossest possible way by stealing from her.”

He said Armstrong she should be under no illusion about the seriousness of her crime, which the court viewed as extremely serious.

Judge Batty added: “At the forefront of the court’s mind will inevitably be a custodial sentence.”

The judge granted Armstrong bail, pointing out that her being allowed to walk out of the court was merely a means of making it easier for the Probation Service to prepare a background report.

He imposed an 8pm to 6am curfew until sentencing, which Judge Batty set for February 7.

After the case, the victim’s son, John Osborne, said the crime had completely shattered his mother’s trust in other people.

He said: “My mother treated her like a daughter. What’s happened is very upsetting.

“My mother is now frightened and she’s lost all her confidence since this happened. I’ve moved into her home to look after her.

“I just want this woman named and shamed.”

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