In 2014 Sandra V. Gilliam was sentenced to spend five years on probation, perform 1,000 hours of community service and make restitution for stealing $71,000 from her elderly father.
Gilliam has completed the community service and has two years left on her probation. But on Friday an Erie County judge told her she no longer has to pay restitution.
Gilliam’s father has died -- and she is his heir.
Gilliam, now 62, admitted in May 2014 that between January 2011 and April 2014 she stole monthly annuity checks and long-term care payments from her father, who at the time was 84 and a resident of an assisted living facility. Gilliam already had paid back $6,000, so Judge Michael F. Pietruszka spared her jail time. But, along with the probation and community service, he ordered her to repay her father the rest of the money at the rate of $500 a month.
The father recently died, said Assistant District Attorney Candace K. Vogel.
So the restitution becomes part of his estate, which Gilliam inherited.
“So, what can you do?” Vogel asked. “The problem would be if he had needed that money (for living expenses), because he wouldn’t have qualified for Medicaid. It would be considered a 'gift.' "