Shameless mom steals $250K from her disabled daughter's trust fund!
What kind of sick, demented parent would use their child's disability money to splurge on themselves? Mom Joan Wilkinson was accused of doing just that. The 59-year-old mother was recently arrested on larceny and money laundering charges for spending close to $250,000 from her daughter's special needs trust on everything from home improvements, appliances to weekend trips and even mortgage payments.
Are you kidding me?
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The woman's 26-year-old daughter, Heidi Deutsch, suffers from cerebral palsy and lives in a group home in New Britain, Connecticut. Wilkinson had set up her trust back in 2005 and transferred $310,025 to the trust from her daughter's estate.
But it looks like Wilkinson never filed annual accounts required the local courts that oversaw the trust fund--and because of that, investigations were launched that finally exposed all her crazy financial mismanagement. She supplied a list of her daughter's expenses that included therapy, equipment along with other services, but failed to actually supply receipts for any of these costs. So there's no actual proof that this money was going towards her daughter's disability needs--which is a problem!
Things got ugly after investigators discovered that most of Deutsch's expenses at the group home were actually being covered by Medicaid and her social security income. As it turns out, only about $35,000 from the trust was being spent on Deutsch with a remaining $248,000 unaccounted for. Wilkinson then admitted that a portion of the money was used on fencing her house, along with other home improvements, a television, a DVD player, a projector, a computer, a printer, a fax, and weekend trips. Oh and that's not including the money that was used to make payments to credit cards, personal loans, AND towards her mortgage.
She was released on a $25,000 bail. Her case is still pending and is due at Superior Court in Bristol on March 8.
The mere fact that a woman would name herself a trustee of her daughter's special needs trust only to misappropriate the funds for her own personal use is as selfish and cruel as it gets.
Image via Thinkstock
Do you think this woman should have received a more severe punishment?