Woman accused of stealing elderly mother's money

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- An Eau Claire woman is accused of stealing nearly $50,000 from her 98-year-old mother.

Prosecutors filed a felony Theft charge against Rachel Goodpaster, 55, of Eau Claire on Monday. A criminal complaint says her mother's nursing home called the Department of Health services in March 2013, saying Goodpaster hadn't been paying her mother's bills. Investigators found that Goodpaster had control of her mother's income, though she did not have permission to receive any of the money. After reviewing financial records between 2009 and 2013, they found that Goodpaster had transferred some her mother's income into her account. She had also deposited her mother's social security money into her account, and cashed one of the social security checks.

Goodpaster admitted to investigators that she used her mother's money to support her son and grandchildren, adding that she knew the rules about her mother's finances, but that the strain and stress of family issues had made her mentally ill. She went on to say that she ended up calling the Department of Health services and told the agency "...somebody needs to take care of my mom because I can't." She also said that she knew she was wrong, but "It just kept eating at me and eating at me and I couldn't stop."

Goodpaster is due in court on Wednesday.

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