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Police: New York woman stole $20K in dead father's benefits

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MORRISONVILLE, N.Y. (AP) — Police say they've charged a woman with stealing nearly $20,000 in her deceased father's benefits as his body decomposed in his New York home.

WIRY-AM in Plattsburgh reports that troopers went to 91-year-old Ralph Teft's home in Morrisonville on May 11 after Clinton County Adult Protective Services discovered his body while conducting a welfare check.

Troopers say his body was covered by blankets on a day bed. Police say he died of natural causes three months earlier.

Investigators on Tuesday arrested 55-year-old Tina Cummings, of Morrisonville, and charged her with grand larceny. Police say she stole over $19,000 in her father's Social Security and retirement benefits issued between Feb. 1 and early May.

She's being held in the county jail on $10,000 bail. Her lawyer declined to comment on the charges.


This story has been changed to correct day of arrest to Tuesday, not Monday, and to show that his daughter is 55, not 44.

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