PARK RIDGE, N.J. — Authorities say a woman who had power of attorney for her former 94-year-old neighbor stole more than $150,000 for her own use — including the construction of an addition to her own home.

Bergen County prosecutors say the victim’s funds were completely depleted by Kim Covello, and the elderly woman now needs public assistance money.

Authorities began investigating after county officials received complaints regarding financial and care-related issues between the victim and Covello, a 62-year-old Park Ridge resident. She’s charged with theft by deception and elder abuse.

Besides the money for the home addition, prosecutors say Covello made direct payments to herself and her family members in violation of the power of attorney agreement.

It wasn’t known Tuesday if Covello has retained an attorney.

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