Caregiver of blind woman allegedly used her credit card for more than $5,500 in food purchases

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RACINE — The carer of a blind woman allegedly used her credit card to buy more than $5,500 worth of food.

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Valerie R. Peterson, 42, of the 4200 block of Mona Park Road, has been charged with one count of unauthorized use of an entity’s identifying information or documents and a misdemeanor charge of fraudulent use of a credit card.

According to a criminal complaint:

An investigator looked into a fraud complaint against Peterson from Jan. 3 to Aug. 24 on the Johnson Financial Group bank account of a legally blind woman.

Peterson is one of her caregivers and made unauthorized purchases totaling $1,550 at Starbucks and $4,043.24 through DoorDash. One of the Starbucks purchases was made at a Root store, and the others were online orders. DoorDash orders came from Dynasty Family Restaurant, WingStop, Taco Bell, Panera Bread and Marci’s on Main, among others.

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Peterson said she used the woman’s card and it was a mistake. Peterson claimed she had no idea he was tethered to her cell phone and thought it was her own credit card being used the whole time. She said the account must have been locked as the main source of payment and she didn’t realize it. She said she used the card to get Starbucks for herself and the wife, but the wife said she never got Starbucks.

On Friday, Peterson was given $350 cash bond in Racine County Circuit Court. A preliminary hearing will be held Oct. 20 at the Racine County Law Enforcement Center, according to online court records.

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