A woman has admitted stealing a ring from her own mother as she lay seriously ill in hospital following a stroke.
Victoria Stephen’s mum had been recovering in Aberdeen Royal Infirmary when the callous thief struck.
Hospital staff found Stephen, 38, grabbing her mother’s belongings before managing to make off with the jewellery, which the Crown said was worth £3,000, although this is disputed by the defence.
Fiscal depute Stephanie Cardow told Aberdeen Sheriff Court Stephen’s mum had suffered a stroke in August 2019 and was wearing the ring when she was taken to ARI.
‘There’s some dubiety over the value of the ring’
Mrs Cardow said: “On being admitted to the ward, the complainer was wearing all her jewellery.
“She has no recollection of the incident due to suffering a stroke.
“At 3pm on August 29 2019, nurses were called to the ward by staff due to the accused causing issues within the ward.
“Staff believed her actions were unsettling the complainer.”
‘There’s clearly a background here’
Stephen was asked to leave but began “taking various items from the complainer’s locker”.
Nurses saw Stephen holding the ring, which they had previously seen amongst the patient’s possessions.
She was asked to return it but refused and eventually left the hospital.
Mrs Cardow said the ring has not been recovered.
Stephen, who had spent her morning in the courtroom complaining that it smelled of “BO”, pled guilty to a charge of theft.
Defence agent Debbie Ginniver asked for sentence on Stephen, of Charlotte Street, Aberdeen, to be deferred for reports.
She said: “There’s clearly a background here.
“She’s been of good behaviour since this.
“There’s some dubiety over the value of the ring.”
Stephen – who also mumbled loudly about how long she was having to wait and exclaimed “about time” when Sheriff Eric Brown came back on the bench after an adjournment – will be sentenced next month.
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