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Health aide admits to theft

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After a three week investigation, Yellow Springs police arrested Fairborn resident LaRhonda Phillips for stealing and forging checks from an elderly resident in Yellow Springs. Phillips, 20, was formerly employed by a home healthcare agency which had assigned her to the house she later burglarized. She was arraigned on Tuesday, April 17, in Xenia Municipal Court, where she was charged with burglary, a first degree felony, six counts of theft and six counts of forgery.

Yellow Springs Police Chief Arthur Scott and officers Dennis Nipper and Naomi Penrod investigated the case. According to the Xenia Municipal Court warrant, on April 5 police received a request to check on the welfare of an elderly woman living at the Spillan Road address and receiving care from two different home health agencies, including Blackstone Home Health. On April 11 an aide from one of the agencies reported to police that Phillips had entered the home claiming to be a Blackstone aide and began caring for the elderly woman.

Police contacted Blackstone and learned that Phillips had been assigned to the local home but had been fired from her job the previous month for failing to come to work. Police informed a family member of the incident, and advised that the family check their bank accounts for any unauthorized checks. Soon after, the family noticed that six unauthorized checks totalling $2,000 had been cashed at a Checksmart in Xenia. Police contacted Phillips, who admitted stealing and forging six checks belonging to a resident of the home she had worked in.

According to Nipper, Phillips is also implicated in a similar case in Beavercreek, where she allegedly stole and forged two checks from a family she was assigned to while still employed by Blackstone. That incident occurred before this one, and as of Tuesday, no charges had been filed by Beavercreek police.

Phillips was enrolled as a student at Central State University in 2010. She is being held at Greene County Jail on $15,000 bond.

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