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Health Care Worker Charged with Embezzlement to Stand Trial

A second woman accused of embezzling thousands of dollars from a St. Clair Shores senior suffering from dementia will stand trial in Macomb Circuit Court.

A 26-year-old Chesterfield Township woman was bound over Tuesday to stand trial in Macomb Circuit Court on charges she of dollars from an elderly St. Clair Shores man.

Kellie Todd and co-defendant Fredine Walker are caretakers accused of stealing more than a combined total of $80,000 from William Abke, a 78-year-old wheelchair-bound resident who is suffering from dementia.

They are alleged to have purchased thousands of items including groceries and furniture by using his credit cards.

"(Kellie Todd is) is a worker who is paid to go in there and help him with his day to day needs," said Suzanne Faunce, chief of the Macomb County Prosecutor's Office Senior Crimes Unit. "She is not supposed to take gifts from Mr. Abke. This is her job to help a vulnerable adult."

Todd was bound over by Judge Joseph Oster to stand trial on one count of embezzlement of a vulnerable adult, a five-year felony. A second count of stealing or retaining a financial device without consent was dismissed. She is free on a $50,000 personal bond pending her Jan. 10 arraignment in Macomb Circuit Court.

A second defendant, Fredine Walker, is charged with four counts of stealing or retaining a financial device and two counts of embezzlement of a vulnerable adult. Walker, 53, of Livionia, has a pretrial hearing Dec. 14 in Circuit Court. She is free on $50,000 bond.

Todd's defense attorney, Emily Long, argued that that there is no evidence that he didn't take part in the food and furniture purchases the women allegedly made with Abke's credit card. 

"What we have is a complete lack of evidence. We don’t have any evidience that Mr. Abke himself didn’t participate," Long said. "Just waving the scepter of impropriety and saying she is a home health care worker, and is being paid to help him, does not in itself meet the burden of proof."

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