A Dundee hospital worker who repeatedly stole cash from the beds of vulnerable elderly patients has been jailed.
Shannon Mills was jailed after she admitted three theft charges committed at Ninewells Hospital.
Mills worked in Ward 5 at the hospital, a unit with 24 beds for the elderly suffering from conditions including Parkinson’s, dementia and pneumonia.
Mills’ thefts only totalled £150 over the course of a year – but a sheriff told her she had “breached the trust of people who are in the most vulnerable of situations”.
Fiscal depute Claire Rowan told Dundee Sheriff Court the thefts took place while Mills was employed by NHS Tayside as a healthcare assistant and that none of the cash was recovered.
Mills, 21, of Inveresk Gardens, Dundee, pleaded guilty to three charges of theft committer between June 2016 and July 2017.
Her pleas of not guilty to five other charges of theft from patients in Ward 5 at Ninewells Hospital were accepted by the Crown.
Solicitor advocate Kris Gilmartin, defending, said: “She has no previous convictions and is of good character. She has never been close to anything like this and her normal contact with the hospital was entirely caring for other people.”
He said stress over her sister’s illness was thought to be at the root of her behaviour.
Sheriff George Way jailed Mills for five months, saying he couldn’t see how that stress had caused Mills to steal from vulnerable people who relied on the integrity of nurses and care assistants.