Spring Hill nurse loses license after theft from dementia patient, authorities say

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SPRING HILL – A certified nursing assistant and home health aide in Spring Hill had her license revoked last month for stealing $3,000 from an 86-year-old patient with dementia and memory problems, authorities said.

Julisa M. Walker, 22, of Keyes Avenue, was arrested September 2010 in Pasco County and charged with exploitation of the elderly, according to Pasco Sheriff’s Office.

Walker pleaded guilty to the charge February 2011 in Pasco County Court, according to Florida Department of Health.

Pasco deputies say Walker was responsible for care of a New Port Richey woman, helping her bathe, shop and clean. But a volunteer for CARES, also known as Community Aging Retirement Services, a nonprofit organization that provides a bill payer service, noticed funds missing from the woman’s checking account.

The volunteer went to the woman’s bank and learned someone had withdrawn $500 using an ATM card and a check was written to “cash” for $2,500.

A video showed a female withdrawing the cash, a report states.

Deputies say Walker, who worked as a certified nursing assistant and home health aide for Bayada Nurses, based out of the company’s New Port Richey office, was responsible.

The elderly woman could not recall giving anyone permission to withdraw that much money or to write a check for cash.

A spokesman for Bayada said at the time Walker started working for the company, which serves 18 states, in February 2010 and quit abruptly in June 2010.

The spokesman also said Walker worked with this particular client from eight to 15 hours a week and had other clients.

Walker was also found guilty of battery October 2011 in Hernando County Court, according to an administrative complaint.

Walker’s license was suspended due to the nature of the charges, which directly relate to her ability to practice nursing, and because she did not report the adjudications to the State Board of Nursing in writing within 30 days as required, the complaint shows.