House-sitter charged with theft of $6,000

Published 12:07 pm Saturday, March 6, 2010

An Austin woman was charged with felony theft Thursday after she allegedly stole $6,000 from a house’s safe last year because she didn’t feel she was being paid enough to “house-sit.”

Patricia Marie Viktora, 64, is summoned to appear April 1 in Mower County court on the single criminal count.

According to a criminal complaint, police were notified of the incident on Dec. 3 when a 64-year-old man and his 87-year-old mother returned home from a trip.

The two noticed nothing disturbed throughout the house, located on the 2700 block of 12th Street Southwest, but they did discover $6,000 missing from a safe. The man said he believed Viktora was the only one to have access to the home as they had left her to watch it.

Initially, Viktora told authorities that she had nothing to do with the missing money, the complaint states. Instead, she claimed she saw a “suspicious” man near the home while the couple was away and indicated it may have been him.

However, Viktora’s written statement differed, and upon further police questioning, she admitted to taking the money.

She said she thought she had only taken $2,700 from the safe, the complaint states. Viktora said she committed the theft because she wasn’t being fairly compensated for watching the home.