WNYT.com

Home health aide headed to state prison

Posted at: 12/04/2012 3:27 PM
Updated at: 12/04/2012 4:26 PM
By: Mark Mulholland

BALLSTON SPA - She gained the trust of a local family and then used that trust to steal their mother's life savings.

Michele Rose, a home health aide, was sentenced Tuesday to three to nine years in state prison for grand larceny in the second degree.

Rose took care of Mary Farchione for five years, visiting her home to help with the daily chores of housekeeping, bill paying and cleaning. But police say Rose cleaned her out.

"Ms. Rose took care of herself first," said Jim Murphy, Saratoga County district attorney. "She wrote checks to herself. She took credit card advances to herself. She transferred funds."

Rose cared for Farchione, who is legally blind, for five years and stole more than $328,000.

The woman's children trusted Rose because she'd helped to care for their father before he passed away.

"We trusted her with my mother's care and unfortunately, Michele decided to take advantage of my mother's situation," said John Farchione.

The district attorney says police weren't able to recover any of the money. They say Rose spent it all on gambling.

"She wasn't secreting the money in a safe deposit box or buying things on the Home Shopping Network. She was going to the Racino and throwing all the money into a slot machine called the Copper Coin," said Murphy.

The judge sentenced Rose to three to nine years. She has to serve three before she's eligible for parole.

As a result of all this, Mary Farchione lost her home and now lives at a nursing home.

"My mom has a life sentence here," John Farchione. "Michele's sentence will end, but unfortunately for my mom, that's not going to be the case."