Elderly Woman Swindled By Churchgoer According To Police

“The grand total of stolen money from the victim’s two accounts is $74,444.81.”

Kelli Coppelli
Full Name: Kelly Ann Coppelli Date:02/28/2018 Time: 11:50 PM Arresting Agency: VCSO – VOLUSIA COUNT Total Bond: $2000000 Arrest Age:42 Gender: Female Birthdate: 03/20/1975 Block: 3900 Florida 44 City: New Smyrna Beach, Florida 32168


A Florida woman is accused of stealing nearly $75,000 from an 88-year-old she met at a local church.  Kelly Coppelli’s bond was set at $1 million.

The alleged victim, Volinda Cook, 88, said she does not know how she will ever get her thousands of dollars back.

Coppelli, of New Smyrna Beach, is charged with exploitation of an elderly person and grand theft of more than $20,000.

“Yes, indeed, I was mad with her. I was a real good friend of hers,” Cook said.

Coppelli told police she met the alleged victim at church after the death of Cook’s husband.

The arrest report said, “Coppelli befriended Cook and assumed the ‘daughter’ role.”

Investigators said at the time, Coppelli misused and misappropriated funds that were in Cook’s two Regions Bank accounts.

The arrest report also said the defendant was “in a position of trust as the victim’s power of attorney.”

“At first glance, there’s a possibility this may very well be a civil matter that made its way to a criminal court,” defense attorney Jeff Higgins said.

Coppelli’s defense attorney asked that his client’s $1 million bond be reduced, adding she’s not a flight risk.

Coppelli’s husband was in court on Thursday, but had nothing to say.


The arrest report said Coppelli was working at SunTrust bank when she meet Cook, then later took a job at Regions Bank.

Regions Bank corporate security provided police with “20 videos from January 2017 to August 2017 of ATM withdrawals” and said “all withdrawals were made by Coppelli; approximately $69,000 was depleted from Ms. Cook’s accounts.”

The report went on to say, “The grand total of stolen money from the victim’s two accounts is $74,444.81.”

Coppelli is in the Volusia County Jail.

“I hope she stays, and rots,” Cook said.

Pastor Ronnie Gorton Now Suicidal After Rape Allegations

“Anytime there’s an allegation of sexual misconduct it’s alarming. Again, especially when it’s someone in a position of authority, people that we trust.”

In statements to local news outlets, authorities revealed that Ronnie Gorton, lead pastor of The Awakening Church in Atoka, Tennessee, has been taken into custody for a psychiatric evaluation after allegedly becoming suicidal and threatening to take his life after recent allegation that he raped two underage boys.

Tipton County investigators told WMCActionNews5 that an anonymous 17-year-old boy made statements last week alleging that Gorton, 39, sexually assaulted, molested, and raped him on several occasions. The Atoka Police Department reported receiving a similar complaint from a 20-year-old man who alleged that Gorton sexually assaulted him when he was a minor.

Billy Daugherty, Tipton County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy, told The Leader that the latest instance of alleged assault by Gorton took place on Jan. 31 and that the case is a multijurisdictional investigation.

“There’s an allegation in the county and an allegation in Atoka,” Daugherty said, adding that there was “nothing to indicate” any of the incidents occurred within the church.

Daugherty further explained that no criminal charges have been filed against the pastor. He was, however, taken into custody after meeting with detectives last Wednesday when a friend of Gorton’s reported that he was armed with a handgun and had threatened to commit suicide.

Daugherty also noted the natural reaction of members of the church and community to be alarmed by the allegations: “Anytime there’s an allegation of sexual misconduct it’s alarming. Again, especially when it’s someone in a position of authority, people that we trust.”

  • Psalms 118:8- It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. 
  • Micah 7:5- Trust ye not in a friend, put ye not confidence in a guide; keep the doors of thy mouth from her that, lieth in they bosom. 
  • Jeremiah 17:5- Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD. 
  • Galatians 6:3- For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.