Passaic County social service clerk pleads guilty to food stamp theft | Paterson Times

Passaic County social service clerk pleads guilty to food stamp theft


A Passaic County Board of Social Services employee pleaded guilty to theft and unauthorized use of food stamp funds on Thursday, according to the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office.

Carol Austin, 62, of Paterson, will be recommended for probation with up to 364 days in the Passaic County Jail by prosecutors as part of a plea deal during sentencing. Authorities alleged she used food stamp benefits that did not belong to her and she was not authorized to use between November 2015 and May 2017.

Austin allegedly used benefits “exceeding $500,” authorities said. Food stamp cards are issued to low-income individuals to help them cover food purchases. She was employed as a clerk at the Passaic County Board of Social Services at the time and had access to food stamp cards that were turned in by clients or their family members.

Judge Adam Jacobs required Austin to forfeit her employment at the Passaic County Board of Social Services and permanently barred her from holding any public office or position of honor, trust or profit within the State of New Jersey, authorities said.

Austin has to pay restitution to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for stolen funds. She was arrested in 2017 by the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office with assistance from the Inspector General for the United States Department of Agriculture.

She is scheduled for sentencing on June 22, 2018.

Austin earned $69,916 salary in her position as clerk, according to public records. She worked as a clerk since 1985.

Austin is the mother of Paterson school board member Nakima Redmon.

  • John Brown

    what a disgrace!!!!! I guess 70K. a year as a clerk wasn't enough for her.
    and give her an extra 30 days for that bad wig!

  • Dominick Perez

    This is why there aren't any funds available to help the poor. This is just the tip of the iceberg.

  • Catrina Simpson

    The system is rigged. People in the welfare office treat you like shit. I was pratically homeless and couldn't get shit! Probably because of people like her. They give help to people they know and don't really need it. I guessing she will know what its like to need help and not get a thing since losing a job and having a record. Really making 70K and risking it all for $500 in EBT funds. Dumbass!

  • Flock Off

    She is considered a part of the "little people" or what some may call " little fish". This is at an high level on government, state, city and local level that a lot of people in so called high ranks get away with on a daily basis. I don't condone her stealing. "But our government tells us to stop working you are not going to get anything we the government will give you everything if you stop working (food stamps,medical,money,pay your utilities,free housing and you don't have to pay us back). But when you work the government take take take and you living check to check trying to make dividends meet. If you was poverty stricken WE WILL HELP YOU GET SOME OF THIS AMERICAN DREAM! Who's really stealing?

  • Anthony Kabir Hinton

    Yea good for her ass.She said some disrespectful things to me a few years ago..