Local Man Arrested After Taking Almost $9,000 From Elderly Relative
By Greg Ritchie
HOUSTON COUNTY – Houston County Sheriffs Department issued a warrant for the arrest of Christoper Mark Jenkins of Crockett for defrauding a family member out of nearly $9,000 by abusing his trust and debit cards.
Sherriff’s Deputy Ryan Hutcherson was called out on a call Nov. 29 from adult protection services regarding financial exploitation of the elderly. A case worker informed Deputy Hutcherson of an elderly man who was recently admitted to a nursing facility in Crockett informing him about a family member who had been using the victim’s debit card for several months without permission.
The case worker shared the victim’s bank statement with Hutcherson who noticed many ATM withdrawals around Crockett over several months. Hutcherson interviewed the victim at the nursing facility who informed him the suspect was his nephew. He had given his nephew his debit card to help him pay bills but the suspect had refused to return the card.
The victim explained the alleged abuse began in March 2022 and only ended when he was admitted to the nursing facility and the account was closed. The victim told Hutcherson his nephew would take his Veterans’ Administration benefits each month and spend the money before he could use the money to pay bills.
He told the deputy his nephew was living at his house and Hutcherson asked him if he was authorized to use the card to buy groceries and the victim responded, “Yes, but not $1,800 worth of groceries!”
Hutcherson requested and received a grand jury subpoena for the victim’s bank statements and after reviewing them, found the suspect had allegedly taken $8,953.20 from the victim’s account without permission.
Hutcherson was unable to locate Jenkins at the victim’s residence but he was arrested a short time later and was held on a $10,000 bond for credit card abuse and another $10,000 bond for financial abuse of an elderly person – both third degree felonies.
Greg Ritchie can be reached at [email protected]