Mesa bank teller accused of ripping off 73-year-old customer - East Valley Tribune: Public Safety

Mesa bank teller accused of ripping off 73-year-old customer

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Posted: Friday, October 19, 2012 10:31 pm | Updated: 12:56 pm, Sat Oct 20, 2012.

A bank teller is facing charges after police said she duped an elderly customer into writing her a check for several thousand dollars.

Gracie Avila was a teller at the Wells Fargo bank branch inside the Fry's at Broadway and Lindsay for the past year and a half. Police said she was having financial problems and knew that a 73-year-old customer was forgetful at times. They said she went to the woman's home and convinced her to write a check for $6,000.

"She really hurt me bad by being so dishonest," the victim told ABC15.

The victim, whose name we are not revealing, said that she didn't really know Avila when she came to the door, but was eventually convinced to write her a check because she felt sorry for her. The victim said she noted the check in her account as a loan.

Police said the victim became concerned about the missing money and apparently didn't fully remember everything that had happened and went to the bank. Bank representatives then contacted police.

Police Detective Steve Barry said that Avila admitted to singling the victim out, and knew that it would cost her her job if anyone found out.

Avila is facing a charge of stealing from a vulnerable adult.

The victim told ABC15 she has had health problems recently and admits she is a trusting person and hopes others will learn from her mistake.

Wells Fargo is crediting the victim's account for the money that was taken and Avila was fired. A police report indicates that Avila returned to the victim's home a second time after getting fired.

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