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She allegedly stole money while working as a home health aide. Now she’s going to prison.

MILFORD — A West Haven woman will spend at least 18 months in prison after pleading guilty to stealing roughly $30,000 while working as a home health aide.

And if she can’t come up with restitution before her sentencing date, she could be facing a much longer stretch behind bars.

Danielle Hackett, 47, pleaded guilty under the Alford doctrine to charges of first-degree larceny and second-degree forgery before Judge Peter Brown.

A plea made under the Alford doctrine means Hackett did not admit to the crime but agreed that the state has enough evidence against her to get a conviction.

She also admitted to violating two terms of probation for prior convictions.

According to an arrest warrant written by Officer Christopher Lennon, the victim in the case reached out to police last June after she noticed what appeared to be a fraudulent transaction in her bank account.

She said her financial adviser was able to find many more irregularities dating back to May.

The woman told police that she had hired Hackett, who she knew as Danielle Harvey, to help her around the house in April, and had paid her with two personal checks totaling $300.

However, the financial adviser found four fraudulent checks totaling $4,500 with signatures the victim said weren’t hers.

The woman also told police that beginning in September, she noticed withdrawals coming out of her account that she had not authorized.

The withdrawals included payments for Hackett’s car, credit cards and cell phone, according to the warrant.

The withdrawals spanned 10 months and added up to $26,101.93, bringing the total of the money stolen to $30,601.93 including the fraudulent checks, according to the warrant.

Hackett initially denied stealing money, but eventually admitted the thefts after becoming very upset and “crying hysterically” over the phone.

Assistant State’s Attorney Matt Kalthoff pegged the victim’s out-of-pocket loss at about $26,000 because some of the money was refunded.

The prosecutor noted the probation violation charges related to similar crimes in 2007 and 2016 for which Hackett was convicted of multiple counts of forgery, credit card theft and larceny and faced up to 13 years of potential prison time.

“This is not the first instance in which Ms. Hackett has been involved in fraudulently taking money from an individual in which she was put in a position of trust,” Kalthoff said.

A plea deal in the case calls for a 15-year prison sentence to be suspended after a minimum of 18 months and a maximum of eight years.

The judge told Hackett that she has until Feb. 5, 2021, to come up with $1,000 in restitution as a show of good faith, then another $9,000 by May 7, 2021.

If she does — and doesn’t get arrested again — he told her he’ll hand down the 18-month sentence when she returns to court June 18.

She would then have to pay back the rest of the money while on probation.

Hackett told Brown she’d come up with the cash.

“I’m working two jobs,” she said. “I’m working very hard.”