PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A Turtle Creek woman is accused of swindling another woman from her church out of nearly $300,000 in gifts, like designer purses and diamond jewelry, by saying it was God’s will.
Police say 35-year-old Judith Irvin is charged with theft by deception and receiving stolen property after taking advantage of a friend from church.
Irvin allegedly met the woman at the Greater Works Church in Monroeville in 2013.
After they became friends, police say Irvin started asking the woman for money for things like late bills, gas or car repairs.
The woman told police when Irvin asked for money she always mentioned God and that God would reward her for giving over her money or that God came to her dreams, saying she needed certain things.
Eventually Irvin claimed God wanted the woman to buy her large-dollar purchases like Louis Vuitton purses and diamond jewelry from Jared Jewelers, police say.
In fact one time, police say the woman bought Irvin men’s jewelry thinking it was for her husband and Irvin immediately went to Treasure Hunt to pawn the items.
The woman’s family says she suffers from Persistent Post-Concussive Syndrome, which has caused her reasoning and judgment skills to rapidly diminish in recent years, leaving her easily manipulated by someone who might take advantage of her.
Police say Irvin preyed upon the woman, while watching her mental state decline and eventually took $281,928 from her.