SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A Springfield woman pleaded guilty Tuesday in Hampden County Superior Court to charges in connection with stealing more than $8,000 in various schemes.
According to Attorney General Maura Healey’s office, 51-year-old Lynn Minella pleaded guilty to two counts of larceny over $250, conspiracy to commit larceny, attempt to commit larceny over $250 and forgery of a birth certificate.
Minella worked as an advocate at a local women’s shelter. According to Healey’s office, investigators found that from 2013 to 2015, Minella stole more than $4,300 in donated gift cards intended for shelter participants. The gift cards were then allegedly used to buy furniture for herself and family members.
The AG’s Office also found that Minella and another woman, Jody Farber-Winters, used identities of shelter participants to apply for Residential Assistance for Families in Transition, which provides short-term financial assistance to low-income families who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.
Minella and Farber-Winters were also found to have created a fake property management company and forged housing court documents to steal more than $3,900 in benefits. Both women were indicted back in September of 2017.
Minella is scheduled to be sentenced on September 27.