An alzheimer's caregiver charged with identity theft may also be indicted for the murder of another patient.
A Hinds County, Mississippi grand jury indicted Stephanie Fields on a charge of stealing a patient's identity. Roy Stingley, 90, was cared for by Fields along with several other elderly patients at her home on State Street in Jackson. Fields allegedly used Stingley's identity to open several credit card accounts and charging over $6,000. The Mississippi State Attorney General's Medicaid Fraud Control Unit is in charge of prosecuting the case, and continues to investigate Fields to see if there are other victims of identity theft among those she has cared for in the past. Stingley's family now has the burden of working to clean up his credit accounts and restore his good name.
In an unexpected twist of events, it was reported yesterday that Fields may face an additional muder charge. Another patient under her care, Janice Hollins died in January during the cold snap. The Hinds County coroner stated that she may have frozen to death while sleeping in a room with broken windows in freezing temperatures. If so, Fields could be charged with murder if the coroner determines that her death was, indeed a homicide.
Fields does not have a state license to operate a home care facility and only needs one if she cares for three or more people at a time. The health department does not oversee such unlicensed private care homes. The state legislature is working to close that loophole in the law and give the health department more oversight authority. In the meanitme, the county coroner, the Jackson Police department and the health department will continue to investigate the cause of Hollins' death. A final medical examiner's report is expected within days.
Fields remains at the Hinds County Detention Center.