ETX woman sentenced to 20 years in prison for theft of the elderly
POSTED: Thursday, November 7, 2013 - 5:15pm
UPDATED: Friday, November 8, 2013 - 4:50pm
Henderson County, Texas (KETK) — On Tuesday, November 5, Judge Carter Tarrance sentenced Brandi Melton, 37, of Trinidad to two 10-year sentences in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice to be served concurrently. Melton was charged with two indictments for the felony offenses of theft.
Melton, along with her boyfriend Brian Fugett, was arrested in August of 2012 by the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office for the offense. Fugett and Melton were hired to care for an elderly woman suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Several items, including silver flatware, plates, and jewelry were taken from the 84 year old woman. Due to her medical condition, the victim was unable to testify. Two of her daughters testified as to the devastating impact the crime had on their mother.
Investigators Casey Hampton and Brad Gray were able to recover some of the items at a pawn shop in Gun Barrel City, where Fugett and Melton had pawned some of the items. The victim’s daughter testified that many of the items, including her mother’s dishes she received as a wedding gift fifty years before, were not able to be located.
Melton and Fugett was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Jenny Palmer and Daniel Cox. Prosecutors urged the court to sentence both to the maximum sentence
According to Sheriff’s reports and testimony at trial, Fugett and Hyde were hired by an 84 year-old woman’s daughters to help care for their elderly mother who was also suffering from Alzheimer’s. Beginning in May of last year, the daughters noticed that some of their mother’s belongings were missing from her home. At the time, the daughters believed the missing items were gone because their mother had misplaced them.
However, in August, they noticed that many large items, such as sterling silver flatware, plates, and jewelry were also missing. The daughters contacted the Sheriff’s Office. Investigators Casey Hampton and Brad Gray conducted the investigation. During their investigation, investigators found pawn tickets at a Gun Barrel City Pawn shop linking Fugett and Melton to the stolen property. Fugett and Melton were promptly arrested.
“Anyone who takes advantage of our elderly in this way should go to prison.” Said District Attorney Scott McKee. McKee indicated that he is proud of the work the Sheriff’s office did on the case as well as the work of his prosecutors in bringing the thieves to justice.