NEWBURYPORT — A Gloucester woman accused of stealing more than $5,000 from the elderly Essex man she was hired to care for escaped jail time yesterday after pleading guilty to more than a dozen larceny charges and other related offenses. 

In November, Rowley police issued a summons to Danielle F. Mayer, 30, for 16 counts of forgery of a check, uttering a false check and larceny by check over $250. 

Yesterday in Newburyport District Court, Mayer pleaded guilty to all counts and was sentenced to two years’ probation with the conditions that she doesn’t abuse the victim and remains drug- and alcohol-free with random screens. All $5,260 reported stolen was repaid to the 85-year-old victim by Mayer’s father, according to her attorney. 

Should she violate her probation, she could face up to two years in jail for each count, warned Judge Allen Swan. 

Mayer’s legal troubles aren’t over, however, as she is due back in court on Jan. 23 for a probation violation hearing stemming from similar charges based out of Gloucester District Court. 

According to Rowley police Detective Matthew Ziev, he met with the assistant branch manager of a Rowley bank who informed police about a female party who had visited the bank on numerous occasions to cash checks allegedly authorized by the victim. In times past, the victim would accompany Mayer to the bank, but recently she had come by herself, raising suspicion among bank officials. 

Knowing Mayer through past dealings, Ziev immediately recognized her when shown bank-generated photos of her cashing checks. In all, Mayer cashed 16 checks from Oct. 4 to Nov. 2, claiming to be signed by the victim. Handed copies of the check, Ziev formed the conclusion that the victim’s signature had been forged. A check of Mayer’s criminal history showed similar offenses.

“Furthermore, Mayer is also on active probation with Gloucester District Court for larceny less (than $250) and larceny by check,” Ziev wrote in his report. 

All told, Mayer faces 10 counts of larceny by check and uttering a false check for a total of $2,860. 

Speaking to a relative of the Essex-based victim, Ziev learned that the family had worked out an arrangement with Mayer’s father, who agreed to reimburse the family, and did not want to pursue formal charges. Ziev also spoke to the victim, who told him Mayer may have entered a substance abuse facility. 

But based on that information and Mayer’s criminal history, Ziev filed charges in Newburyport District Court in November. 

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