A Delaware County woman was arrested after she allegedly stole $40,000 from her elderly mother and created a false GoFundMe page, claiming her mother was sick when she was actually in good health.
Carol Mongrandi, 53, of Brookhaven, is charged with theft by unlawful taking or disposition, receiving stolen property, forgery and theft by deception.
The investigation began when Denise Gallagher, Delaware County’s Ombudsman Coordinator, received a call from the administrator of Lima Estates regarding a 92-year-old woman who had been a resident there for 35 years. The administrator told Gallagher the woman always paid her bills on time but was suddenly late when her daughter Carol Mongrandi took over as her Power of Attorney.
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The administrator says Mongrandi’s mother’s account at Lima Estates was in default of approximately $32,098.16 despite numerous letters that were sent to her. Police later learned Mongrandi was opening bank accounts and credit cards in her mother’s name and making ATM withdrawals from her accounts, according to investigators. Mongrandi allegedly opened a credit card for Sears and Capital One which she used for her daily living expenses and also signed her mother’s name to a car loan without her knowledge.
Investigators also say Mongrandi created a GoFundMe page to seek donations from the public to pay her mother’s bills. On the page, Mongrandi allegedly claimed her mother was undergoing a decline in her mental and physical health after suffering two strokes even though she was actually healthy at the time. Mongrandi earned $1200 through the GoFundMe page which she used for her own personal gain, police said.
Investigators executed a search warrant on all of the financial accounts in Mongrandi’s mother’s name. They then learned Mongrandi made unauthorized withdrawals totaling $40,070.25 without her mother’s permission, according to investigators.
Mongrandi surrendered to authorities and was released on her own recognizance under $50,000 bail after an arraignment. Her preliminary hearing is scheduled for Dec. 22.
Information on Mongrandi's attorney was not immediately available.