Detectives still reviewing evidence in nursing home case


Detectives from the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office are still trying to return stolen items that were part of the recently concluded felony case against a Dayton woman who confessed to stealing thousands of items from nursing homes.

Susan Gwynne, 55, was sentenced to 65 years in prison for 46 criminal offenses including: 17 counts of burglary, second-degree felonies; four counts of theft, third-degree felonies; 10 counts of theft, fourth-degree felonies and 15 counts of receiving stolen property, first-degree misdemeanors at a hearing on Nov. 7.

Since the sentencing, detectives from the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office have been working to return the more than 3000 stolen items to their rightful owners, officials from the Sheriff’s Office said last week.

Major David Wiseman, a spokesman for the sheriff’s office, said that anyone who believes the items stolen from the nursing homes may belong to them and have filed a police report should contact the sheriff’s office to see if their property is among the stolen items.

Gwynne originally faced 101 charged, but pleaded down to the 46 charges at a hearing in September.

The plea was part of an agreement with prosecutors and in exchange the remaining 14 counts of burglary, 29 counts of theft and 12 counts of possessing criminal tools were dismissed.

At the sentencing hearing, Assistant Delaware County Prosecutor Amelia Bean-DeFlumer said that Gwynne went to more than a dozen assisted living facilities dressed as a worker and stole items, mostly jewelry, from residents at the facilities. Bean-DeFlumer said investigators started an investigation in January after some items were reported at The Inn at Olentangy Trail.

During a search of Gwynne’s home, more than 3000 items were recovered. Bean-DeFlumer said they still had not been able to determine where all the items came from but said they were able to identify 46 victims.

Bean-DeFlumer asked for a lengthy prison sentence for Gwynne and said she preyed upon the elderly and had caused them emotional pain by not only stealing valuables like jewelry but by also stealing items like family heirlooms and personal items.

At the change of plea hearing, Gwynne said that she was stealing to support a cocaine habit but at the sentencing hearing Bean-DeFlumer said there was no evidence that she had a drug problem. Bean-DeFlumer also said that Gwynne had written a letter to her son stating that she made up the drug addiction story to get a shorter sentence.

At the sentencing, Gwynne tearfully addressed the families of the victims who were in attendance and said she was “deeply sorry for the pain and loss.”

After hearing from Gwynne, prosecutors, and Gwynne’s attorney David Birch, Delaware County Common Pleas Judge David Gormley sentenced Gwynne to 3 years for the 17 burglary charges, one year for the 14 theft charges and 180 days in jail for the 15 counts of receiving stolen property for a total of 65 years in prison. Gormley ordered the burglary and theft sentences will be served consecutive to each other and the receiving stolen property charges will be served concurrent to the other charges.

Gwynne was also credited the 145 days she had spent in the Delaware County Jail at that time.

Bean-DeFlumer said that the owners of a majority of the stolen items have not yet been identified and said Gwynne also pawned a number of items she stolen and those would likely never be found.

Gwynne is serving her sentence at the Ohio Reformatory for Women in Marysville.

Susan Gwynne and her attorney David Birch at a hearing in November. Gwynne and her attorney David Birch at a hearing in November.

By Glenn Battishill

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Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.

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