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Elderly caretaker confesses to $17K fraud in Hialeah, police say

HIALEAH, Fla. – A woman who was hired to provide personal care services to aging adults in Miami-Dade County confessed to stealing about $17,460 from them, police said.

According to Adriana Quintana, a spokeswoman for the Hialeah Police Department, Naomi Hernandez Martin was working with Maximum Home Care when she preyed on victims, ages 80 and 77, who were bedridden, disabled, and suffering from various stages of dementia.

“Ms. Hernandez would befriend and gain the trust of the victims, against company policy, convincing them to let her purchase groceries, pay their bills, and assist them with other livelihood expenditures in the furtherance of her scheme,” Quintana said. “She would write out the victims pre-signed checks to herself and her boyfriend.”

Erminia Jimenez said she and her husband were among Hernandez Martin’s victims. The caretaker, she said, persuaded her husband to sign blank checks, and told her that she was doing it all to take care of her two-year-old daughter.

Hernandez Martin, 52, appeared in front of Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Mindy S. Glazer on Wednesday for a bond hearing. Court records show she is facing charges in two separate cases with Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Lody Jean.

Detectives have surveillance videos of Hernandez Martin during visits to Wells Fargo and Publix that were related to her alleged crimes.

Hernandez Martin is facing two counts of exploitation of the elderly, two counts of organized fraud, two counts of grand theft, and two counts of depositing a worthless check with intent to defraud. In one case, she is also facing a petit theft charge. In a second case, she is also facing a charge of witness tampering.

Records show she was released on a $43,500 bond, including $15,000 in the case with the additional petit theft charge and $28,500 in the case with the additional witness tampering charge. Court records show she has an arraignment hearing scheduled at 9 a.m., on July 1 for both cases.

Miami-Dade detectives are asking anyone with information about other possible victims to call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-8477.

Local 10 News Photojournalist Mario Hernandez contributed to this report.

About the Author:

The Emmy Award-winning journalist joined the Local 10 News team in 2013. She wrote for the Miami Herald for more than 9 years and won a Green Eyeshade Award.