PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A Washington County woman faces charges after police say she scammed an 82-year-old church congregation member out of more than $300,000.
Police say 42-year-old Goldie Fields was on the church’s list of people in need of financial assistance.
According to the criminal complaint, the congregation member met with Fields and started giving her small sums of money. The woman says she initially gave Fields $40, $70 or $100 at a time, and then grew into amounts of several hundred dollars.
“It was a situation where the defendant was identified as someone who needed help and the elderly victim wanted to help her,” said Washington County District Attorney Eugene Vittone.
The woman told police Fields claimed to be a CNA at a care home and that in order to keep her job, she needed money to pay for more nursing school. When the woman tried to write out the checks to the alleged nursing school, police say Fields said she needed the money in cash.
The victim told police she realized at some point that she was “in over her head,” but was embarrassed and continued to believe Fields would pay her back.
However, between May 2010 and April 2014, police say Fields took approximately $310,000 from the woman.
“How could people do that to an older person?” said Fields’ neighbor Karen Andrews. “That’s sick. I find it demented. I can’t believe these people are out on the streets.”
According to documents, Fields admitted to taking somewhere between $80,000 and $90,000.
It’s unclear what Fields did with the money or if it was ever used for any classes.
Fields faces multiple theft charges.