Jennifer Curtis charged for stealing over $200K from grandmother - FOX 32 News Chicago

Palatine woman charged for stealing over $200K from grandmother

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BRIDGEVIEW (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

Family ties were not strong enough to keep a northwest suburban woman from stealing more than $200,000 from her 98-year-old grandmother, according to prosecutors.

Jennifer Curtis, 43, of the 300 block of Tanglewood in Palatine, was arrested Wednesday and charged with forgery and senior financial exploitation, according to the Cook County State's Attorney's office.

From October 2005 through July 2011, while she had power of attorney for her grandmother, an Indian Head Park resident, Curtis would write checks, make electronic payments and forge electronic wire transfers from her grandmother's bank accounts, prosecutors allege.

She used the money to pay off her own credit card bills, loan payments and car payments, prosecutors allege. She also took vacations in the Cayman Islands, Costa Rica and across the United States, and purchased other items for herself, including restaurant outings, apparel, food and gas, prosecutors allege.

She would then intercept bank and credit card statements so her grandmother would not see the unauthorized withdrawals, prosecutors claim.

The scheme was brought to light when other family members grew suspicious and changed the power of attorney to a niece of the victim, who contacted Indian Head Park police after noticing discrepancies of more than $200,000.

At the Bridgeview Courthouse on Thursday, Curtis was ordered held on a $100,000 bond and a preliminary hearing was Oct. 29.

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