Woman admits stealing more than $250,000 from neighbor

A 37-year-old District woman pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to stealing more than $250,000 from a former neighbor, federal prosecutors said.

Lori Hawkins admitted in the District’s federal court that she stole the money from a 62-year-old woman, a former neighbor she had known for years. The woman had diminished mental capacity due to brain tumors she had when she was in her 20s, prosecutors said.

When the woman’s brother and caretaker died in 2007, she began living in an assisted living center, prosecutors said. Hawkins then produced a document she claimed granted her power of attorney over the woman’s estate, which was valued at more than $400,000, according to prosecutors said.

Prosecutors said Hawkins stole money from the woman’s estate for her personal benefit, taking trips to London and Las Vegas, among other places.

Hawkins faces between 24 and 37 months in prison under federal sentencing guidelines. She is scheduled to be sentenced in November.

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