A carer who stole jewellery from her clients and sold the items at pawn shops in the Kingswood area of South Gloucestershire has been jailed for 18 months.
Patsy Edwards, 46, of Ashcombe Crescent in Warmley, admitted three counts of theft at Bristol Crown Court (15/9).
Edwards was working for a care group at the time she committed the offences and was a carer to mostly elderly clients, carrying out duties including cleaning and washing.
Some of the jewellery she stole from her clients held great sentimental value, including wedding and engagement rings.
In one case she stole and sold a Masonic ring given to the victim by his late wife in the 1950s.
In December 2014, a manager at a pawn shop in Kingswood contacted police to raise concerns over Edwards, in particular the amount of jewellery she was bringing in to sell.
An investigation was launched and Edwards was arrested and interviewed.
Det Con Alastair Binnie said:
“Our investigation started with just a picture of a single item of jewellery – a sweetheart brooch. We identified the brooch’s owner who confirmed it had been stolen.
“We obtained copies of Edwards’ timesheets and spoke to all of her clients, many of which confirmed that items of their jewellery had gone missing.
“We were able to identify specific items of missing jewellery as being sold by Edwards to one of several pawn shops in the Kingswood area.
“Edwards refused to admit any responsibility in interview and said the jewellery was given to her by her late father or had been bought at a car boot sale. However, the strength of the evidence against her led to her admitting offences earlier today.
“To prey on and then profit from people you’re supposed to be caring for is despicable and heartless.
“I’d like to thank all the victims for helping us bring Edwards to justice, as well as her employers and the pawn shops for helping with our inquiry.”