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Bank Employee Who Stole Thousands From Elderly Customers Sentenced

A former bank employee was sentenced today for stealing money from the accounts of elderly customers, according to a U.S. Department of Justice release.

Bartlesville resident Patricia L. Swearingin, 67, was convicted of stealing from 23 elderly customers by using her position as a Savings Officer at Osage Federal Bank. The bank is now named American Heritage Bank.

She was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court in Tulsa to one year and one month in federal prison for stealing a total of $147,466.30. In December 2013 she pleaded guilty to misapplying funds.

Swearingin withdrew funds from bank accounts owned by elderly people between November 2007 and November 2010. She would then cash a check forged in the customer's name while telling a drive-through teller that the customer was waiting in her office for the money.

The release states that she would sometimes deposit the cash in her personal account but would often spend it on gambling.

In addition paying back the money she stole to the bank, Swearingin was ordered to pay the costs of investigating the crime and forfeited $45,137.02 from her retirement account.

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