LORIS, S.C. (WBTW) — A 38-year-old Loris woman was booked into jail Tuesday after police said that she took money from a vulnerable adult.
Paquita Denise Purcha has been charged with the exploitation of a vulnerable adult. Her bail has not yet been set.
She was the victim’s caretaker, according to police documents.
Police heard from the victim in August, who said his bank notified him that he was overdrawn on his checking account, according to an incident report. When police reviewed his account information, they found “several suspicious and unauthorized withdrawals” from an ATM. The victim told police that he didn’t have an ATM card.
The victim said that his Social Security check is deposited into his bank, and he then receives a check so he can pay his bills, he told police.
The victim received $783 on July 2, 2020. He wrote a check the following day, and then again on July 6. The bank told police that it’s normal for the victim to only write checks.
A new account was set up under his name in February 2020, which meant a new ATM card would be sent to his home, according to police records. In order to activate the card, he would have had to call the number printed on it, and then set a PIN.
From July 7, 2020 to Aug. 3, 2020, a total of $319.32 was withdrawn from the account, according to police. The victim did not authorize the withdrawals.
The bank gave police a photo of the person with withdrew $180 in one of the instances. The person was identified as Purcha.
While talking to police, Purcha reportedly said she’d call the victim every time she used his money, but said she didn’t get permission from the victim’s niece to use the money. She said her job lets her take the victim places two times a day, and that if she’s offered money, she’s allowed to take it — as long as it’s after she gets off work.
She initially told police she didn’t have the ATM card, and then later admitted to activating it and setting the PIN to 1234. She said that the victim asked her to withdraw $180 from his account on one of the instances, and then he used $100 to pay a bill at a pharmacy in Tabor City in North Carolina. The report does not state if that claim was true.
Authorities received a warrant for her arrest on Sept. 8, 2020. She was arrested on Tuesday after an officer stopped her for speeding.