Hospice Worker Pleads Guilty in Laurel

A former hospice worker in Laurel was sentenced to prison for felony exploitation of a vulnerable person.

Attorney General Jim Hood's office says Lena M. Hinson, 50, of Laurel, pleaded guilty to one count of felony embezzlement and one count of felony exploitation of a vulnerable person.

Hinson was sentenced to serve five years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections, with four suspended. She was immediately taken into custody to begin serving her one year sentence.

Hinson is to serve two years post release supervision and must begin paying restitution to the victim in the amount of $3,552.47, court costs of $382.50, $1,000 to Crime Victim’s Compensation fund and $1,000 to reimburse Jones County for the use of the public defender.

Hinson will also be required to participate in the Eighteenth Circuit Court Community Service Program.

Officials say at the time the crimes were committed, Hinson worked at Seyah Hospice of Laurel as a clerk. The Attorney General’s investigation showed that Hinson added herself as a co-signor of the savings account of one of the patients served by the Hospice.

Then, for a period of about eight months, Hinson withdrew $3,552.47 from the victim’s savings account and converted the funds for her own use.