NORTH MIAMI, Fla. – A former North Miami nursing home employee was arrested Wednesday after she deceived three sick or disabled residents, stealing more than $13,000 from their bank accounts to shop at Macy's and buy baked goods, among other things, according to the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit of the Florida Office of the Attorney General.
Haymee Hernandez, 49, faces three counts each of grand theft and exploitation of the elderly.
Hernandez was the Medicaid coordinator at the Claridge House in North Miami.
According to an affidavit, Hernandez conned her victims into giving her their ATM cards and withdrew cash from their accounts without their knowledge or consent.
State investigator Edward Hayes wrote in his report that Hernandez duped her first victim in April 2015, telling him that she needed the ATM card "because he had too much money in his bank account" to qualify for Medicaid. Hernandez said that she would take half of his $4,000 and put it in a vault at the nursing home for safe keeping, but she never did.
Instead, the card was used 13 times between April and June, Hayes wrote.
The man had diabetes, anemia, chronic kidney disease and hypertension.
Hernandez tricked another man in July 2015, again telling him that he had too much money in his account to qualify for Medicaid, Hayes wrote. She had the man, who used a wheelchair, withdraw $1,500 and give her the personal identification number to his ATM card, Hayes said.
The card was used five times on four separate occasions that same month, the affidavit said.
According to the affidavit, after Hernandez was fired, a partially blind man who was concerned about his pension check discovered that she had conned him, as well.
Hernandez had the man open a new bank account in December 2014, telling him that his other account couldn't process his electronic pension transfer because it was in British pounds instead of U.S. dollars, Hayes said. She took his debit card, passport, Social Security card, new checks and his Medicare health insurance card, telling him that she would store them in the vault, Hayes said.
Instead, Hernandez used the card 26 times on 20 occasions between December 2014 and July 2015, the affidavit said.
When confronted by authorities and the administrator of the nursing home, Hernandez admitted to using patients' money because "she was having financial problems as a result of her divorce," Hayes wrote.
Hernandez faces up to 30 years in prison if convicted.