CLAY COUNTY, Mo. – A suburban mom is accused of stealing thousands from a cancer victim. Prosecutors say the suspect worked at a Northland retirement center and used the money for things like tanning, gasoline and groceries.
Angela Kreps, 35, used to be the director of social services at the Maple Wood Care Center off NE 79th Terrace, across from Oak Park High School. Court records say Kreps used her position at the center to gain the victim’s trust. Investigators say Kreps befriended 60-year-old Kay Wiley. Wiley is a cancer victim and suffered a stroke.
She told police she requires 24-hour skilled nursing care, which is why she lives at Maple Woods.
Court records say in 2014 and 2015, Kreps used Wiley's debit card to spend more than $3,000 without Wiley's permission. Police reports list nearly 50 "illegal transactions" at places like Quik Trip, Hobby Lobby, and Dollar tree. Investigators say Kreps also used Wiley's money at her own doctor's office and to renew her tanning membership at Venetian Tan.
The victim told detectives she has no guardian or power of attorney. Wiley said she "never gave Kreps permission to use her debit card when Wiley was not with her."
FOX 4’s Megan Dillard knocked on Kreps’ door Wednesday afternoon, but no one answered. Someone did close the garage door while the crew was on the front porch, ready to ask Kreps questions about the charges.
Sources tell FOX that 4 Kreps turned herself in earlier in August and is out on bond.
Tina Uridge is an expert advocate for older adults. She’s the Executive Director of Clay County Senior Services. Uridge said she would’ve liked to have seen stronger checks and balances in place. She said it’s disturbing “to see a vulnerable older adult be taken advantage, especially someone that may have some cognitive impairment and putting all their trust into that care facility.”
Urdige says 1 out of 10 older adults will endure some kind of abuse and that financial exploitation of seniors is on the rise.
“I'm glad to see charges are being brought forth,” Uridge said.
Court records say Kreps also set up a Facebook page in the victim's name and signed up for online banking -- both without Wiley’s permission. Kreps quit her position at the center when the investigation started, according to court documents.
Maple Woods wouldn’t comment to FOX 4, citing “confidentiality and HIPAA,” though the questions were in regards to Kreps and the center’s policy, not the victim.
Kreps could face fines and up to seven years behind bars if convicted.