A Mablethorpe care worker who stole more than £9,000 from the bank accounts of two elderly clients has been given a suspended jail sentence.
Tessa Sikes, 30, of High Street, Mablethorpe, admitted two allegations of fraud, while working as a carer for the two vulnerable pensioners.
Lincoln Crown Court heard that between January 2019 and January 2020 Sikes took the bank cards of two of her clients and used them to purchase items including clothing, a coffee machine, internet provision and Sky TV.
Hal Ewing, prosecuting, said one was an 83-year-old man with dementia who she cheated out of £9,500 and the other a 77-year-old housebound woman who lost more than £300. Both were clients visited regularly by Sikes.
Mr Ewing said there were a number of fraudulent transactions showing on the first victim’s bank statement and three on the second victim’s account.
Sikes denied any fraudulent behaviour during her first police interview and claimed a coffee machine which was bought on the first victim’s bank card was a gift from a friend.
David Eager, mitigating, said Sikes was working as a carer to feed her two children and was previously the victim of an abusive relationship which left her with little money.
Many of the items bought with the cards were sold to get food for her children.
“She has not come to court in a Ferrari,” Mr Eager added. “She loved being a carer.”
Mr Eager told the court Sikes indicated a guilty plea at her first court appearance.
“From the first moment she spoke to me she has been honest about her offending.
“She has been honest with the probation service.”
Since the offending Sikes is holding two jobs down at a garage and a supermarket to help pay compensation to her victims, Mr Eager added.
Passing sentence Recorder Jennifer Jones told Sikes: “It is a quite remarkable breach of trust. The victims here were particularly vulnerable.”
But the Recorder said she had taken into account Sikes’ difficult personal circumstances and her previous good character which meant she could suspend her jail sentence.
Sikes was sentenced to 16 months imprisonment, suspended for two years. She must also complete 75 hours of unpaid work in the community and obey a six month electronically monitored curfew.