As money ran out, suspect stopped refilling in-law’s medicine
A Rocky Mount woman has been sentenced to an active federal prison sentence for stealing her elderly in-laws life savings then spending the money for her own personal bebefit.
US Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina Robert J. Higdon, Jr. announces Thursday United States District Judge James C. Dever III sentenced Elizabeth Williamson, 55, to 21 months imprisonment for bank fraud and 24 months imprisonment for aggravated identity theft, to run consecutively for a total of 45 months. Judge Dever also ordered Williamson to pay $95,691.95 in restitution to the victims and to forfeit $30,320.30 to the United States.
On June 17, 2019, Williamson pled guilty to one count of bank fraud and one count of aggravated identity theft. According to the investigation, between 2015 and 2017, she stole her elderly in-laws’ life savings for her own benefit. To assist in carrying out her scheme, Williamson submitted a Power of Attorney to BB&T for use on the their bank accounts, stole their checkbooks, wrote checks listing herself as payee, and forged their signatures on the checks. She also used their bank account information to pay her bills and shop online.
Williamson also submitted a fraudulent change of address form to the United States Post Office redirecting all of her in-laws’ mail from their home to her home. On at least five occasions, federal prosecutors said she stole checks mailed to her in-laws and deposited them into her own State Employees’ Credit Union account. The investigation also determined that, as the money dwindled, she stopped refilling her in-laws’ medication. In issuing its sentence, the Court noted Williamson stole the victims’ “peace of mind” and “systematically deceived them.” After serving her sentence, Wiliamson will be placed on supervised release for five years.
For more information on how to prevent and combat elder abuse, please visit the Elder Justice Website at https://www.justice.gov/elderjustice. Elder fraud complaints may be filed with the FTC at www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov or at 877-FTC-HELP. You can also contact the Victim Connect Hotline between 9am-6pm, Monday through Friday, at: 1- 855-4VICTIM (1-855-4842846), or contact the Elder Justice Coordinator at the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina at 919- 856-4530.
The U.S. Postal Inspection Service conducted investigation of this case. Special Assistant United States Attorney Tamika Moses prosecuted the case for the government.