Nov 15, 2021

Aged care manager stole $18,000 from resident to pay for cigarettes

Aged care manager stole $18,000 from resident to pay for cigarettes
This image does depict person/persons from within the body of the article below.

Kellie Anne Telford, 49, made two appearances at the Mount Gambier Magistrates Court last week where she pleaded guilty to multiple counts of aggravated taking of property without consent. 

Ms Telford had been employed at the Lambert living aged care facility for seven years and used her position as a facility manager to acquire a 67-year-old resident’s bank card and pin number. 

According to police, Ms Telford used the card roughly once a fortnight over a seven-month period and only turned herself in to her bosses when the resident’s bank card was confiscated by an ATM.

Ms Telford’s defence lawyer, Jarrad Sim, told the court that his client was very remorseful and used the money to cover daily expenses.

He also revealed that the majority of these expenses were cigarettes as Ms Telford regularly smoked 40-50 cigarettes a day.

The defence claimed that Ms Telford began taking the resident’s money because her employer was often late in paying her, however, Magistrate Koula Kossiavelosdisputed disputed this explanation and pointed out that many of the transactions were less than a week apart and did not align with the defendant’s pay schedule. 

“Look at the dates … 15th of July, 18th of July … that’s not a week apart,” she told the court. 

“What I’m getting at is that it was more than just not getting paid by her employer.

“My client is also suffering from depression. While she was only diagnosed with depression recently, she has, in hindsight, been suffering from depression for many years,” he said.

“She is, your honour, extremely remorseful; more than that, she’s incredibly ashamed of her actions,” said Mr Sim.

Ms Telford is set to appear in court for sentencing in December.

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  1. Regardless of her circumstances she stole from a vulnerable person who trusted her to provide the care and safety they deserved. It’s a sad situation when a facility manager who should be leading by example steels from someone who was entrusted in her care. I’ve worked in aged care for 15 years and it saddens me to know that this type of behaviour occurs from an employee at this level. Shame on you Kellie Telford your a disgrace to an industry that is already difficult without people like you betraying our elderly and their families. I hope your punishment fits your crime.

  2. No excuse is good enough to allow this appalling action to go unpunished.
    Put in a position of trust and abusing that trust is unforgivable.
    Deregister her so as she never has the opportunity to do it again

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