Assisted Living CNA Stole Over 200 Pills, Police Say

Mar 7, 2019, 5:57 PM | Updated: 6:18 pm

LOGAN, Utah — When we send our loved ones to assisted living, we want them to be treated like family.

Alexandra Cespedes says that is, for the most part, what the woman she considers her aunt got. That is, until they recently noticed something was off.

“She noticed that her pills had gone missing, and didn’t mention it, didn’t think much of it at the time,” Cesepdes said.

Once a bottle of 120 pills of hydrocodone turned up empty, Cespedes said,  her aunt brought it up.

“We wanted to catch her in the act, and we wanted to expose this,” Cespedes said. “We knew if she was abusing my aunt, that she was going to be abusing other patients too.”

Alexandra Cespedes

Being a cadet in the local police academy, Cespedes says she knew to turn to the Cache – Rich Drug Task Force.

Her aunt agreed to have a surveillance camera placed in her room, at Legacy House Assisted Living on Monday.

By Tuesday morning, she noticed more pills were gone.

Police say the woman in the video was 32 year-old Tasha Alvarado, a certified nurse assistant with more than ten years of experience.

Surveillance image of Alvarado.

Surveillance image of Alvarado.

“Her job is to handle medications for Legacy House,” Logan Police Captain Curtis Hooley said. “But she had no business in that room. She didn’t work with that particular resident, and apparently didn’t work on that floor.”

Hooley says Alvarado admitted to taking the pills from Cespedes’s aunt, and from two other residents who she did administer drugs to.

“It’s sad, it’s really sad,” Cespedes said. “She ruined her career. She’s devastated her kids. It’s very upsetting.”

Cespedes says her aunt recognized Alvarado as someone she’d seen often.

Legacy House

Legacy House

“My aunt considered her her friend,” Cespedes said. “But you don’t do that to your friends. No friend of mine would do that.”

Alvarado was booked into the Cache County jail on suspicion of theft, burglary, exploitation of a vulnerable adult and possession or use of a controlled substance.

Hooley says she admitted to taking some of the pills, and selling others.

Megan Siler, Executive Director, at Legacy House said Alvarado was current on all of her certifications and did not show any signs that anything was wrong.

Siler says she has been terminated, and will not be able to work at Legacy House again.

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Assisted Living CNA Stole Over 200 Pills, Police Say