A new car, new TV and flight tickets for his girlfriend were apparently more important than his own daughter's future.
A man who splits his time between Nashville and Palm Beach County is accused of frittering away his daughter's $58,000 inheritance from her late mother — who died in 2011.
Willie Edward Lockridge, 41, allegedly went on a shopping spree that was kickstarted when he intercepted a check mailed to his brother — the girl's court-appointed plenary guardian.
According to a Palm Beach Sheriff's Office arrest report, Lockridge spent $28,088.14 on a 2007 Jaguar XK, $1,323 on a 54-inch plasma TV, and also spent the money on plane tickets for his girlfriend, shoes, jewelry and other items.
The girl's mother died on Oct. 30, 2011, and left her daughter $58,866.61, the proceeds from a 401(K) employee stock ownership program from Costco, where the mother worked.
Lockridge came under investigative scrutiny in August 2012. That's when a tip was received by fraud auditors working in the Division of Inspector General in the Palm Beach County Clerk and Comptroller's Office.
Lockridge was arrested Jan. 8 in Nashville and charged with larceny over $20,000 and fraud.
"This exemplifies how our Guardianship Fraud Program protects Palm Beach County's most vulnerable citizens," said Clerk and Comptroller Sharon Bock in a statement, noting it was the first arrest since the launch of the Gaurdianship Fraud Hotline in 2011.
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Dad Squandered Daughter's $58,000 Inheritance for Car, Flight for Girlfriend, Say Deputies