Former Acadia Parish deputy faces new charges
More and more details surrounding the second arrest of Acadia Parish’s former public information officer for the sheriff’s department.
According to the arrest warrant issued Wednesday to Maxine Trahan, 57, investigators with the Louisiana State Police were given a heads up about a new potential charge regarding Trahan from an elderly woman’s caretaker.
According to the warrant, Trahan is accused of stealing $46,662.87.
Trahan bonded out of the Lafayettte Parish Correctional Center Wednesday afternoon on the charges of exploitation of the infirmed and theft of more than $46,000. When she bonded out, Acadia Parish Sheriff’s Office deputies were waiting for her, according to current Sheriff KP Gibson.
Gibson explained that, since the original bond was now called into question, Trahan had to post a new bond in Acadia Parish. Trahan was transported to the Acadia Parish Correctional Center and posted the $50,000 bond again, this time with a bondsman.
The victim in question is an older woman who has suffered a stroke which left her paralyzed on one side and has a history of dementia. Trahan was known to the woman for some time and drove her to doctor visits and to run errands. During the course of their investigation, authorities learned that Trahan lived in one of the woman’s rent houses at no charge and the lady would actually pay Trahan cash for helping her.
Following her arrest in April in Acadia Parish for theft regarding her time at the sheriff’s office, the woman’s caretaker grew concerned that Trahan may have taken advantage of the lady.
As state police investigated the complaint, they learned that Trahan, out on bail, had the old lady put up her property as collateral for her bond in April.
The victim told investigators that she was driven to Crowley back in April and signed some papers at the Acadia Parish Correctional Center in the city. At the time, the woman had no idea why she was taken to Crowley. She also had no knowledge as to what the paperwork she signed pertained to nor did she know she had actually posted her property to bond Trahan out of jail.
Investigators also interviewed deputies that acknowledged the elderly woman did in fact sign property bond paperwork. The deputy who prepared the paperwork stated that the woman was confused and didn’t appear to know what she was signing. The deputy said she believed the lady would have “signed anything put in front of her,” according to the warrant. The deputy also told investigators that she was instructed to prepare the paperwork and that she was instructed to prepare the paperwork and that she wasn’t responsible for making sure anyone understands it.
Outside of the direct incident, investigators learned of several other incidents that added to Wednesday’s charges. They learned Trahan had her name placed on the lady’s checking account and found checks written out to Trahan that totaled more than $23,000. It was during this time that investigators learned of Trahan’s living situation.
The charges from Wednesday also date back farther than April 2016 as investigators learned that Trahan redeemed a Certificate of Deposit in the lady’s name in November 2015 for $20,000 and that only $17,000 of it was placed in the woman’s bank account.
In another incident from April, Trahan allegedly drove the lady to a bank where another $20,000 CD was cashed. Evidence of this incident includes Trahan’s signatures on the documents and bank surveillance footage making the transaction obtained by investigators. On that same day, an hour after that transaction, Trahan deposited $20,000 into the Drug Asset Forfeiture Bank Account. The account is significant because it is the account Trahan is accused of stealing from in her April 2016 arrest. At the time, Trahan said of the $20,000 she found the money in her office drawer.
The elderly lady, meanwhile, told investigators she knew the CDs were cashed, but didn’t authorize Trahan to ever receive any money from them. She said she had $80,000 in CDs originally. The warrant states she now has zero.