U.S. Attorney Carol Casto announced Tuesday a former employee of a West Virginia nursing home pleaded guilty to embezzlement.
Thirty-five-year-old Veneford Blankenship of Princeton was employed as a business office supervisor at a nursing home in West Virginia, at which time she diverted multiple residents’ payments checks. Blankenship was responsible for recording deposits into the nursing home’s accounts. Money was also deposited into another account that was specifically for outings, dinners and small events. Bank statements for the nursing home’s operations account were sent to the parent company. The other account did not generate bank statements, according to court documents.
In June 2015, Blankenship began depositing payment checks from residents into the other bank account, instead of the operations account. She would then write checks to herself from that account. She forged signatures of two people with signature authority. To avoid detection, Blankenship wrote bogus memos on the checks and indicated the withdrawals were for nursing home purposes. She would update the nursing home’s accounting program to show the residents paid invoices and the nursing home received the funds that she had stolen.
Blankenship has agreed to pay $82,926.15 in restitution. Her sentencing hearing is scheduled for January 23, 2018. She faces a maximum 20-year prison sentence.