On Oct. 8, several transactions, including $650 at Target, were run up at the Glendale Galleria on a bank card stolen from the Glen-Park Retirement Facility, Balian said.
Two other Glendale retirement facilities were hit in October, but the names of those facilities have not been released, according to a Glendale police detective.
Glendale police learned of Reese’s identity when an Orange County Sheriff’s deputy called with a tip, after seeing surveillance footage of Reese on a local news channel, Balian said.
“The detective told us that she knew [Reese’s] identity because she was doing the same thing a couple years back in Orange County and ended up going to state prison,” Balian said.
Reese has an extensive criminal record, including an August 1997 conviction for grand theft in Glendale and two pending burglary charges in September, according to the Los Angeles County Superior Court’s criminal index.
Reese, who is on parole, is also wanted on a $1-million warrant related to a burglary arrest, Balian said.
“She’s probably going from hotel to hotel and doing this as her business during the day,” he said.
Criminals who target senior citizens prey upon seniors’ trust, said Mark Beach, communications director for the AARP.
“It’s a generalization, but older folks who grew up in the [pre-World War II] generation . . . are raised to be more polite and considerate and to listen to people,” he said. It’s amazing how depraved individuals can be in taking advantage of trust — in fact that’s what the scammers play off of. They count on the trust and the good manners.”
The incidents in Glendale were unusual in that simple burglary was the aim, and the suspect did not seem to create an elaborate front, he said.