A rest home worker who stole more than $3500 from a
delusional elderly resident to fuel her gambling addiction
has been sentenced to community work.
Nadine Leigh Kinnersley, 42, from Wainuiomata, Wellington,
convinced her 80-year-old victim to make out a cheque
intended for the rest home in her name.
The man, who suffered from chronic delusional disorder and
dementia, often tried to gift money to rest home workers -
gifts staff were banned from accepting under a signed
Kinnersley was not charged for accepting six such gifts, but
was charged with using a document for her own gain after she
asked him to make out a cheque for $3772.70 in her name.
Her lawyer said she had taken the money to fuel a gambling
addiction she was seeking help for.
She sought a discharge without conviction, noting it would be
difficult for her to find work at another rest home with a
Kinnersley had entered a guilty plea, attended restorative
justice with her victim and repaid about a quarter of the
money to the rest home, which had already reimbursed the
Judge Stephen Harrop told Kinnersley she had betrayed her
victim's trust, noting his delusional disorder and the fact
she had known him for 11 of the 16 years she had worked at
the rest home.
"He was particularly vulnerable and you knew he was."
Judge Harrop declined a discharge without conviction and
sentenced Kinnersley to 40 hours of community work. He also
ordered her to repay the rest of the money owed to the rest