My elderly step dad 'gave up on life' after cruel carer stole £30k – he only had 4p left

A DEVASTATED son has told how his elderly step father "gave up on life" after his cruel carer swindled him out of £30,000.

Michelle Summerhill, 55, heartlessly left Marcel Brown with just four pence in one of his bank accounts after raiding his savings.

She preyed on the trusting pensioner while posing as a kind-hearted aide, assisting Marcel with his cleaning and shopping.

The callous carer even posed as his daughter as part of her sick plot to fleece him, so she could cash in his £20,000 premium bonds.

His horrified stepson Michael Deasey told how his dad "gave up on living" after uncovering her thieving.

He told the Manchester Evening News: "He died within 12 months.

"He just couldn't believe what she had done, after what he had done for her."

Marcel passed away aged 88, while wading through his despair after finding out Summerhill had swindled him out of thousands.

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"He really did trust her like his own daughter, we all trusted her," Michael said.

Marcel had tragically even written his carer into his will – leaving her £10,000 – which she unbelievably RECEIVED despite her deception being exposed.

The 55-year-old began working for the pensioner back in 2012 and was paid £50 to £60 a week for helping him around the house.

But when he suffered a stroke and her workload grew, Summerhill's wages were upped to £100.

Despite receiving a substantial payment for her services each week, the greedy carer was stealing thousands from Marcel's bank accounts.

Michael explained her web of deceit was only brought to light when he visited his stepfather and he appeared "unsettled".


The grieving son said: "He was really good with his bank statements.

"One day when I went, you could see he was reading his bank statements but he was a bit upset."

The pair discovered that there had Summerhill had been making regular cash withdrawals from Marcel's accounts for nearly three years.

"He had four pence left in one bank account, she had emptied the lot,"
Michael fumed.

The family then realised the cunning carer had even pretended she was Marcel's daughter to cash in £20,00 of premium bonds which were then transferred into his bank account.

The sum was later returned following a complaint to National Savings and Investments.

Michael's wife Carmel added: "We had full trust in her, we treated her like family really. We couldn't believe it, it was like a bad dream.

"We kept thinking it can't be true."

But in a cruel twist of fate, Marcel had left Summerhill thousands of pounds in his will – which she was handed.

We had full trust in her, we treated her like family really. We couldn't believe it, it was like a bad dream.

His family were unable to change it before he died in 2019, meaning she was legally entitled to the sum.

After Summerhill was arrested, she initially denied taking any money without permission.

She admitted to cashing in the premium bonds, but claimed Marcel had agreed to do so.

The 55-year-old carer eventually pleaded guilty to theft and has now been locked up for 10 months – blaming her crimes on her obsessive compulsive disorder.

But Judge Nicholas Dean QC batted away her excuses that she "couldn't stop spending."

He told her: "In effect that means that you could have stopped what you were doing.

"Your mental health difficulties, which I accept exist, were not
stopping you from your continued course of theft.


"Your theft from him was a betrayal of the trust, and a betrayal of
the friendship, indeed rather more than that in some ways, the love
that Mr Brown had shown to you."

Defending, Milena Bennett said of Summerhill: "She did quite a lot for
him, that is the good part of it.

"Unfortunately even though she didn't start with intentions to steal
money from him, she started taking money especially from ATMs when she was given the card by Mr Brown.

"She did the shopping but unfortunately she was taking money for herself."

Ms Bennett said there was a "link" between Summerhill's frivolous
spending and her obsessive compulsive disorder, which was diagnosed in 2018.

"It is not an excuse of why she did it, but it would explain," she said.

She said Summerhill, of Wythenshawe, would buy clothes, shoes and items she "didn't need".

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