Danielle Conti, 43, was charged with grand larceny, petty larceny and criminal possession of stolen property after allegedly charging items to a former patient’s credit card who died from Covdid-19, according to the New York Police Department.
At the time of the alleged theft, the man was lucid. He later died on 12 April from complications of Covid-19.
“I was in shock and disbelief,” Tara Catapano, his daughter, said. “Obviously, I knew it had to be a hospital employee because visitors weren’t really allowed.”
Ms Catapano took over her father’s finances in 2014 after her mother died.
Typically, she would not pay close attention to what her father spent, but then she saw a charge for gasoline on the statements when he tended to pay cash. Upon looking further, it was discovered the charge was made on 9 April while he was in the hospital.
Police later analysed security footage from the gas station and discovered what appeared to be Ms Conti using the credit card for her purchase.
Other items missing from her father’s possessions were his cell phone, eyeglasses, and cash in his wallet.
“They take an oath to protect, not to harm,” Ms Catapano said.
The hospital released a statement, stating: “Danielle Conti has been temporarily suspended and faces termination in response to the felony charges. We are working closely with the law enforcement authorities and the hospital is conducting its own investigation. Ms. Conti has been an employee since 2007.”
Ms Conti was expected to appear in court sometime in September, a NYPD spokesperson said.
But Ms Catapano wants more answers as to why someone would take advantage of a patient while on his “deathbed”.
“He is my father, he is a person,” she said. “I am disgusted (Conti was) supposed to be taking care of him and instead … stole from him.”