Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice announced Thursday that a Queens woman has been arrested and charged with grand larceny and falsifying business records after she allegedly stole more than $12,000 from two local group homes for the developmentally disabled in Lynbrook and East Rockaway where she worked as the resident manager.
Rice said that since 2001, Denessa Yearwood, 36, of Springfield Gardens, who worked as the resident manager for a group home in Lynbrook and in East Rockaway, stole more than $12,000 by altering or re-using existing receipts for resident expenses in the homes' ledgers.
The theft was discovered during a routine audit of the Lynbrook home's books in May 2011 by a compliance analyst with Adults and Children with Learning and Developmental Disabilities, Inc., a non-profit that provides services to more 3,000 developmentally disabled children and adults in Nassau and Suffolk Counties, Rice said. Yearwood was terminated in June 2011.
“The caregivers in these homes are supposed to be responsible for the safety and wellbeing of the residents, not taking advantage of them,” Rice said. “The residents of both homes have been shortchanged for more than a decade, and it is outrageous that this defendant would abuse her position this way.”
Yearwood was arrested Wednesday by DA Investigators and charged with grand larceny in the third degree and 10 counts of falsifying business records in the first degree. She faces up to seven years in prison if convicted and is due back in court Friday.
The charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.