Press Releases

Minden Woman Arrested for Stealing Nearly $400k from Elderly Residents
Former Social Services Director Charged with 68 Counts of Criminal Violations

BATON ROUGE, LA – Attorney General Jeff Landry's Louisiana Department of Justice, with the assistance of the Minden Police Department and the Bienville Parish Sheriff’s Office, has arrested a Minden woman for stealing approximately $391,000 from residents of Leslie Lakes Retirement Center (LLRC) in Arcadia.

Stephanie Sanders Hays, 49 of Minden, was arrested on 15 counts of Theft of the Assets of a Person who is Aged or Person with a Disability, 19 counts of Money Laundering, 17 counts of Forgery, and 17 counts of Exploitation of Persons with Infirmities. Hays allegedly executed several schemes from September 2012 through February 2016 in order to gain access to the financial assets of at least one resident of LLRC, where Hays worked as a Social Services Director. 

Hays allegedly abused her Power of Attorney authority over the affairs of a resident – draining a bank account, IRAs, annuity plan, and proceeds from the sale of the resident’s home. She also allegedly shopped for items requested by the residents at local Walmart stores with forged retirement center checks. A portion of the funds allegedly stolen included Social Security payments, pension payments, and German reparation payments.

“Our office fights daily to protect our State’s seniors and sick. Criminals preying on Louisiana’s most vulnerable will be investigated, apprehended, and prosecuted,” said General Landry. “It is a disgusting travesty for the elderly, especially Holocaust survivors, to be scammed and robbed by those supposedly caring for them. I hope to get justice for our victims very soon.” 

Hays was arrested without incident after investigators located her in a pharmacy parking lot in Minden. Minden Police transported Hays to the Webster Parish Jail, where she was then extradited to Bienville Parish. Hays’ bail was set at $300,000.

Coming soon, the attorney's general office seeks to provide a mechanism by which to take online payments for collections.