Personal Driver Found Guilty of Stealing from 92 Year Old

TUCSON – Attorney General Mark Brnovich announced a jury found a personal driver guilty of stealing $18,000 from a 92 year old Tucson woman. Marisela Navarro was found guilty of 11 felony counts including one count of Fraudulent Schemes and Artifices, two counts of Theft, and eight counts of Forgery.

In March 2011, the victim hired Marisela Navarro, by personal reference, to drive her periodically. The elderly victim lived alone and needed assistance getting to and from the grocery store and doctors appointments. Navarro is not associated with a company or driving service.

The victim suffered from cognitive impairment and was unable to keep track of her bills or bank statements. In 2013, the victim’s children discovered numerous bills were unpaid and the victim had maxed out $6,000 in an overdraft credit line. During an investigation, it was discovered that a large number of checks had been written out and cashed by Navarro for amounts that did not match up with her limited role as personal driver.

Although the victim had been told that Navarro was stealing from her, the victim continued to allow Navarro access to her home. Navarro once again stole and cashed checks from the victim’s new bank account until the victim’s daughter took over financial responsibility for her mother.  Due to the victim’s vulnerability, she was moved into an assisted-living facility. The 92 year old victim died a few months after learning of Navarro’s betrayal.

Navarro is facing a minimum of 3 years to a maximum of 60 years in the Arizona Department of Corrections.

Her sentencing is set for April 4, 2017 in Pima County Superior Court.

Assistant Attorney General Doug Clark prosecuted this case.